Victor Meutelet and Kassim Meesters
17th September 2022
Photographer: Olivier Polet
Make Up Artist: Coiffure Ivona Zafir
Styling: Victor Meutelet dressed by Agnes B
Kassim Meesters dressed Urban Outfiters
Interview & Digital Editor: Pankhuri Bhutani
Editor-in-chief: Owen James Vincent
Location: THE WORLD OF BANKSY Exhibition
Victor Meutelet and Kassim Meesters are actively going up the stairs to fame, thanks to their impeccable talent. Successfully garnering a hugely positive response on both their acting journeys respectively, Victor and Kassim recently joined hands in Gregory Beghin’s latest offering “Deep Fear”. The production which was shot in an extremely limited number of days dealt with the cast and crew spending an uncanny amount of time shooting completely underground.
“Deep Fear” follows three students who decide to celebrate their graduation with a visit to the local catacombs deep in the heart of the French capital. There they discover a bunker bearing the number ‘717’. Little do they know about the legend attached to the creepy foxhole, that it was even feared by the Nazis themselves during the World War II occupation. For the dugout is not the only thing the Gestapo soldiers have left behind them. Something, someone, is hunting them and trapped deep underground in a maze of horrors, the trio needs to get out before it’s too late.
We recently had the pleasure of talking to our latest digital cover stars- Victor Meutelet and Kassim Meesters regarding their insights into their professional journey as well as what their experience was like working on their collaborative project “Deep Fear”.
Hi there Victor. So lovely to have you over at ReVamp! How is 2022 treating you so far?
Hi! Very well, it has been a perfect mix between new shootings, promotion for upcoming movies, and a good time with friends and family.
I obviously have to start by talking about your upcoming role in “Deep Fear”. Huge congratulations on the project! What was it initially that drew you closer to this project?
Thank you very much! Actually, that was the most classic casting process. I had the first casting alone and the second one with other actors. The director wanted to check the chemistry within the group. And I think he found it since it was great to share this journey with Sofia, Jo, and Kass.
Is there anything, in particular, you can tell us about your role within the movie as well as the general plotline?
I really loved playing Henri because he isn’t so far from who I am in real life… As I was saying, the chemistry was amazing between the four of us… We definitely needed that, otherwise it would have been quite difficult to go through 17 shooting days… under the ground! That was the most challenging shoot I’ve made so far: 17 days without any daylight, in a cold and wet atmosphere.
How was your experience like working with the phenomenal Kassim Meesters, Sofia Lesaffre, Joseph Olivennes, Gregory Beghin, and all the talented people affiliated with the project? Any memorable behind-the-scenes you’d like to share with the readers?
Joseph is the best “joke-teller” ever. Our director Gregory Beghin is also one of the best. It was great to have them around in those particular conditions to keep the team united and involved.
Besides “Deep Fear”, you were also seen starring opposite the sensational Lily Collins in Netflix’s highly successful series “Emily in Paris”. What can you tell us about this specific endeavor? What was it like playing the role of ‘Timothée’?
I feel very lucky to be a part of that show. While shooting the first season, I realized it was a bigger production than the one I’m used to but I couldn’t expect such a success. The whole cast and crew, half-French, half-American, welcomed me very well and put me in the best conditions.
Where do you garner your major acting inspirations from when it comes to your professional journey?
Each part is different. I try to catch something in my partner’s performance. Of course, some acting performances that I watched on screen might inspire my work but in an unconscious way.
If given an opportunity, who would you love to collaborate and work with in the future? Any specific genres of projects you’re currently looking forward to indulging in your future years?
There are so many people I dream to work with that I can’t even choose one. I would go for an alternative answer if I may: I’d love to work with industries that I never worked with. Especially the Spain industry. I love their cinema. I’m also very curious about the British industry.
What can your fans expect from you in these upcoming years? What are the top 3 things on your bucket list that you want to achieve by the end of this year?
I hope they will continue to follow and support me as they did so far! I have two feature films called “Les Rascals” and “Filip” that will soon be released in 2023.
The top 3 things by the end of the year… I can’t even say… It’s not that I want to keep a secret, I just don’t even know my plans for the coming week!
Lastly, I’d like to ask you if there’s any message you’d wish to convey to your fans reading this interview?
I don’t know if I have fans but if people are following my work and I can make them love some movies I play in, that’s fantastic. If I can bring an audience to discover different movies. We do this job to share our passion so that’s what I’m trying to do. Hope people are going to enjoy my next projects!
Hi there Kassim. So lovely to have you over at ReVamp! How is 2022 treating you so far?
Hi! Thank you for having us. I’m doing great! Thank you for asking. 2022 is pretty cool so far, I’m actually moving to a new place right now so I’ve been pretty busy with it at the moment and focusing on what’s cool about it including the new energy as well as the new location. Except for this, one of the crazy details of my daily life that I’m very happy with is that “Deep Fear” is having an international life! The film is doing well in festivals like last week at the ‘Frightfest’ in London, now in Austin, Texas, soon in Spain, Germany, Austria, and Australia, and will be released on multiple platforms, cinemas, and DVDs. It’s very cool to see the different reactions within the different countries.
I obviously have to start by talking about your upcoming role in “Deep Fear”. Huge congratulations on the project! What was it initially that made you accept this project?
Thank You! “Deep Fear” was a very challenging movie to do. It took only 17 days of shooting and 15 days of them in the actual underground of Belgium surrounded by humidity with no daylight at all. Genre movies are often a question of energy to do the best with less. Like the Godfather of the genre- Roger Corman did decades ago. So, yes I guess what was intriguing in making this film was the challenge aspect of it.
I can still remember the day I received a phone call from the casting director so well. He was like: “Hi Kassim, first things first, are you claustrophobic?”. Even before talking to me about the actual script, aha. And after a good reading of it, I was so happy to have the opportunity of being involved in a genre movie that seems to be a completely crazy adventure into the catacombs. It’s like a once-in-a-lifetime experience kind of thing.
And since I like those moments in life where you know it’s going to be 100% craziness and of course unforgettable, I just can’t not do it. It was such a blast to jump on this after my Netflix series “Coyotes” and create a character so different from the last. Even if both characters live crazy things. That’s the essence of this job and why I love it so much.
Was there anything specific about the character that you felt resonated to? What was your overall experience like working on this film?
‘Max’ was a very funny guy to go with. He is basically afraid of everything that’s existing in the catacombs. So it’s the kind of character that goes really deep into surreal scenes of freaking out. And it’s so cool to play with.
I really loved making this film! It was a chance for me to meet my partners in crime in this production (Sofia Lesaffre, Victor Meutelet, and Joseph Olivennes). They are just so talented and were so generous when we were on set. When I was confirmed to play Max, I knew they were part of the adventure.
Another cool thing was that they all had bigger experiences than me in this job so I also learned a lot by being surrounded by them during these days- “under the living world”. And even though some difficult times were keeping the best energy in those dark tunnels, we were a very good team, with the other cast members and the director of course but also with the crew. Everyone was committed to doing the best we could in this film. The director- Gregory Beghin is a big fan of Horror movies and knows exactly how to keep the audience with us and emerge in this experience. The movie is also a tribute to B movies with humor, action, fear, and a second degree.
Do you have a specific acting ritual? How do you usually prepare yourself before finally stepping in front of the camera?
I’m still looking for the best way to find a good ritual. But for now, I know that I really like all the research when it comes to the creation of a character. I like watching other movies that explore the same kind of world and reference story or subjects. I also like reading about the period of time where the film takes place. And one other thing that really helps me, is to find the character’s clothes because when I know how he dresses, I can better imagine how he stands or how he walks and even sometimes how he talks. So yeah, I like a lot of preps.
When I watch other movies that’s also a “game” for me to deconstruct and analyze as to how the actor creates and works his part. Leonardo Di Caprio is such an inspiration for me. He’s the one I dreamed to be as a kid, to become an actor when I discovered “Catch Me If You Can”. Watching how he works on a set is such a lesson, I imagine for many actors of my generation.
Where do you garner your major acting inspirations from when it comes to your professional journey? If given an opportunity, who would you absolutely love to collaborate and work with in the future?
Mostly through watching people in their everyday lives. I really think that you can learn so much about someone just by getting a very good look at them. I love watching and spying on people to garner their way of talking or behaving. And yes, I also watch a lot of movies! I’m addicted to watching as much as I can. There are so many incredible movies produced over the decades of cinema. It’s almost like a religion for me.
There are so many people I would love to work with that it is hard for me to name one or two. I guess all I can say is that I’ve always been very inspired by the work of Wes Anderson and Edgar Wright. I also loved Greta Gerwig and Ari Aster’s latest projects. Honestly, there are just too many people that collaboration with them would be an actual dream come true for me and I feel like by not naming them all, I am committing treason. But it is what it is. I go step by step, in this business, and I always keep in mind that I have the chance to do the job I expected to do when I was a kid. That reminds me every time that there are so many dreams to live and movies to do.
What are the top 3 things on your bucket list that you really want to achieve by the end of this year?
Well, I would love to end my move to my next apartment. That will be a very good first thing to do, aha. After this, I’d like to continue watching more films. I actually have a very long list of classical titles to see. And finally, because we’re talking about “Bucket List”, I’d like to travel a bit with some friends in the northern countries and discover new people as well as new traditions.
What’s next for you, Kassim? Any plans for your upcoming projects?
We continue to go with “Deep Fear” on more festivals. This International journey is the opportunity to also meet new professionals and share our experience; That’s also to meet journalists like you and you give us an opportunity to let people know about us. That’s a chance.
Soon there will be the release of my next short film “Head in the Stars “ by Coralie Majouga. A new challenge for me. I explore inner emotions and the movie is focused on my character. For the next adventure, I don’t know yet, I’m back to the casting and meeting process for the next project.
(Thank you for your time!) Lastly, I’d like to ask you if there’s any message that you’d like to convey to your fans reading this interview currently?
Thank you for your time as well! The only thing I would like to say to all the people that are going to take their time to watch “Deep Fear” is: Thank you!
Making this movie was an unforgettable experience for me. And it means the world to me thinking that people can finally watch it whether they like it or not. This film has been made by people that love their jobs and have the utmost passion to share them. I can promise!