France 5 is rebroadcasting the Rendez-vous en terre inconnue program this Tuesday, December 28 at 9 pm, shot in Ethiopia with singer Vianney and already broadcast on France 2. A year later, Raphaël de Casabianca remembers this trip with emotion. And worries about the locals crossed in this African country which, since, sank into civil war.

Rendezvous in Unknown Land is back tonight … on France 5! In this episode broadcast in May 2021 on France 2, Raphaël de Casabianca and Vianney went to meet the Afar people in Ethiopia, in a very remote and mineral corner of the Horn of Africa. A particularly successful and emotional episode, which had captured some 5.9 million viewers, an excellent score. Asked about the release of his book Destination Petaouchnok, published by Hachette, the successor of Frédéric Lopez, evokes, among other subjects, and a posteriori, this shoot full of good vibrations. A year later, and as the civil war spread across part of the country, concern overtook him.

Télé-Loisirs: You have made hundreds or thousands of trips, which were the most intense?

Raphaël de Casabianca: I would say the next one, because I am fundamentally optimistic … but two have marked me enormously. The first dates from 2009, in the Himalayas. With my friend Antoine (co-author of the book Destination Petaouchnok, editor’s note), we went to the Himalayas, in the middle of winter. It involved joining a monastery where about four hundred monks resided, in total autonomy. The only way to get there was through a frozen river. No road. We had to slide on the ice, and sleep in caves, several thousand meters above sea level, before reaching, after ten days, a village straight out of Tintin in Tibet. My other great memory goes back to last year, and this trip made in 2020 with Vianney in Ethiopia for Rendez-vous in unknown land. The meeting with Vianney had gone extremely well. It is also impossible to forget Humed and his son Abid, breeders of goats and camels. This journey continues to live with me. The link still exists. So much so that the events taking place today in Ethiopia disturb me. Right now it’s war. I’ll try to hear from them. I keep thinking about them a lot.

I’ve always had problems landing, having trouble reconnecting. There, we saw strong things, so many fragments of humanity, it shakes up… the return can be difficult. That was the case at the time of my great travels, it remains the case today with Rendez-vous en terre inconnue. Even though it is part of my job, I live these moments intensely. I am very focused on the conversation with those who receive us, without necessarily knowing if we are filmed or not elsewhere. On the way back, I am not too reachable for a few days. I need time to reconnect with my everyday life and my emotions. This is often the case also with my guests, with whom, on return, we often continue to chat via WhatsApp.

It is because these “returns” and “goodbyes” were becoming more and more difficult that Frédéric Lopez wanted to hand you over in 2018 …

At first, I didn’t quite understand his reasons. I understand it more today. Multiplying emissions comes at a cost, both human and physical. By spending two weeks or three weeks there, one enters the hearts of men. Until we have a goodbye or a goodbye, we don’t realize. I can understand that after ten or fifteen years, Frédéric will no longer be able to carry on all this …

Unlike Frédéric, who had not returned, I wanted to go back to the field and see the people I met. I hold on to this idea. I hope that France Télévisions will give me the opportunity to do so. I’m fully aware that the more shows I shoot, the more complicated it will be …

Going after Frédéric Lopez in Rendezvous in unknown land and Our unknown lands was it so obvious?

I didn’t think for a second when it was offered to me, in 2018. I said yes straight away! But I didn’t think the pressure would be so great. It was complicated to follow in Frédéric’s footsteps. He so embodied his dates. At first I was quite stressed. Over the trips, I think I have managed to find my style. I’m just a smuggler. But I don’t analyze myself too much anymore …

At the start, he remained very present. He is less so now, because he has confidence. I took my marks and got hold of a lot of things, but he’s always there to supervise or give advice. He is extremely benevolent.

Do you nominate the guests yourself, like Barbara Pravi who will be your next guest in Our Unknown Lands?

Yes. I was in chorus to renew the cast a bit elsewhere. Our shows must also speak to a new generation. There are a lot of singers lately. It is sometimes complicated to make their agenda coincide with that of production. For Vianney, it took two and a half years! Note that Our Unknown Land is not necessarily seen as a Sub-Rendezvous in Unknown Land. Some artists even prefer this formula in France, because it is easier to fit into a schedule.

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Related title :
Raphaël de Casabianca worried one year after his trip with Vianney to Ethiopia for Rendezvous in unknown land
” Rendezvous in unknown land “with Vianney: this Tuesday December 28, 2021 on France 5 – Fémin Actu