‘Lupin’ secretly took over the world. Part 2 can’t be so sneaky.

Anyone who claims to have predicted the widespread, worldwide success of a Netflix series “Lupin” Perhaps a little steeped in revisionist history.

when First five-episode installment On January 8, the show’s team hoped that “Lupin” would do well in his home country of France, where the title – a reference to a popular hero from early 20th-century novels – would ring at least a bell, and where its The star, Omar Si, regularly tops polls of most popular celebrities.

“At first we just focused on finding a story that resonated with our customers in France,” Damien Couvreur, Head of Original Series for Netflix France, said in a video chat. (Most of the interviews for this article were translated from their original French.)

But “Lupin” exploded out of the gate, instantly becoming a global phenomenon and eventually Netflix’s most-streamed non-English-language original. Now a new batch of five episodes — Part 2, as Netflix is ​​calling it — has arrived and is available Friday around the world. For a show that is set with modest expectations, the release of its latest installment could be the TV phenomenon of the summer.

“Being a British person, you just think, ‘I can believe that when I see this’ – you don’t want to get excited,” the producer and showrunner said, George KeuAbout the success of , Part 1. “We got a really good balance around the world in terms of response, which I understand is unusual for a Netflix show, he said, pointing to the regional targeting of most of its programming.

16-year-old Mamadou Haidara — who made her screen debut playing the teen version of Si’s character, Asane Diop, in flashbacks — was just as surprised.

“I didn’t see it coming,” he said in a video chat from outside his home in the Paris suburb of Vitry-sur-Seine. “I saw Twitter and Instagram going up and over – I loved it. I thought the series would do it like any other series. But you’re going crazy like that? I never imagined it.” (It’s a safe bet he didn’t imagine netflix sales will start “Lupin”-branded throw pillows either.)

He sneaks in and takes off with the screen time of the planet “Lupin”: eventually, Asane learns from his literary hero, the flamboyant “gentleman thief” Arsene Lupine, that operating in plain sight may be the best way to avoid the unfair. note. Sy called that idea a . featured in propaganda trick In January, in which he put up a poster for the series in a Paris metro station – wearing a mask for Covid-19, but still.

A major asset to the show is that it is family-friendly, which meant a lot at a time when many countries were under lockdown and people were home-confined.

Clotilde Hesme, who plays Juliette Pellegrini, said, “I was so inspired to see something my son and my father do together, a cool elegant mermaid to seduce Asane.” Nice to see family entertainment.”

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Netflix France’s Couvreur said another strength of the series is that it doesn’t try to overpower its Gallic specialties. “That’s how you create stories that travel around the world: they’re authentic,” he said, citing the Mexican series. “Who killed Sarah?” and german series “barbarian” As shown by other examples from Netflix are anchored in local cultures and operate in multiple countries.

Just as “The Queen’s Gambit” boosts sales of chess sets, “Lupin” revived interest in original books Maurice LeBlanc, which has been in the public domain since 2012.

Hachette, the main Leblanc publisher in France, contacted Netflix several years ago after seeing a news item about the series in the works. Hatchet Romans managing director Cecil Terroune recalls that the streamer kept a tight lid on the show, sharing only screenshots of the Lupine book that Asane had inherited from his father, Babakar (Fargus Asande), and Then turns to his own son, Ral (Etan Simon).

“In January, we put out a version of ‘Arsene Lupine, Gentleman Thief’ with the same cover as some people will have in their library,” Terouen said in a video interview. “We didn’t know what to expect so we printed 10,000 copies. Today we have sold 100,000 copies and printed 200,000, and it shows no signs of stopping.”

To coincide with the new episodes, Hachette is re-releasing the LeBlanc novella “The Hollow Needle”—again, with the same basic cover design as Babaker’s book on the show, but in blue. “We were like, ‘This is great, we’re going to do them all!'” Terouen said with a laugh. “But we can only use the Netflix branding for the first two. For now at least.” She said sales also increased internationally, with a Korean publisher showing interest in copying the covers seen in the series, followed by homes in Italy, Spain, Poland and Portugal.

(One Netflix hit doesn’t automatically translate into book sales: The “unconventional” The series did well in France but Terouen said that Hatchet sold only 4,000 copies of the Deborah Feldman memoir that inspired it.)

It won’t be a surprise if the lupine craze also fueled tourism, now that travel is starting to resurface. Some venues on show, such as the Louvre and the Orsay museums, hardly require extra crowds. But the coastal Norman town of Tretat has already seen an additional influx of people from the chalk cliffs and pointed rock formations that play a central role in the Lupine mythos and, according to Eric, in the nail-biter ending Part 1 of the show. . Baudet from the local tourism office. Visitors can also see LeBlanc’s old house tretat . In, where he composed several Lupine stories; It is now a museum.

As for Kay, she doesn’t have time to roam the French countryside. The author is busy working on a true-crime mini-series about Peter Sutcliffe, a 1970s serial killer nicknamed the Yorkshire Ripper. “It engages the other half of my brain and pushes me to not get too excited about big, big things,” he said.

But yes, Kay is developing the next “Lupin” installment, too. “It’s announced in a subtle way,” he said. “There are some Easter eggs and some clues buried in there. Part 3 will be a departure in a whole new set of adventures, and I want to bring back even more fun from those early episodes.”

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