He’s the man who turned around France’s Eurovision fortunes and made La Republique relevant again after a decade in the wilderness.

But despite a string of critical successes, Edoardo Grassi was axed as Head of France’s Eurovision delegation this morning by France 2.

The news was announced through Eurovision France’s official Twitter account, where the broadcaster paid tribute to Edoardo’s work since 2016. The tweet also referenced having “100% in house control” for Eurovision 2019, suggesting that a desire for more control may have motivated the decision. Edoardo was an external employee.

The new Head of Delegation will be Steven Clerima, which the broadcaster confirmed in a subsequent tweet.

EDOARDO GRASSI’S THREE YEARS AS HOD

Grassi became French Head of Delegation in 2016 and scored an immediate success with that year’s entry “J’ai Cherché”. It finished sixth on the night of the Grand Final and became the first French Top 10 entry for 7 years.

French contestant Amir was also able to translate his Eurovision success into commercial success, scoring a triple platinum album off the back off his appearance at the show.

Grassi followed up 2016’s success with two further critically lauded efforts in 2017 and 2018.

“Requiem” by Alma finished 12th in 2017 and this year Madame Monsieur finished 13th with their entry “Mercy”. But both songs endeared themselves to Eurofans, and Madame Monsieur’s efforts drew international attention in Billboard, the New York Times and elsewhere owing to a powerful and timely backstory.

Before 2016 France had spent four years outside the top 20 on the scoreboard, so Grassi’s results represent a vast improvement.

Grassi has yet to comment publicly on the news, but 2017 contestant Alma did reply to the news through her official Twitter account:

One of Grassi’s long ambitions was to run a credible French national final, which he achieved with Destination Eurovision last year. France 2’s tweet announcing Steven Clerima’s appointment did suggest he will helm that show, but whether we can expect changes remains to be seen.

In sum, Grassi’s legacy will be in revitalising France’s place in the contest and turning it into a genuine contender for victory after years in the wilderness. His enthusiasm for the contest was palpable, infectious and he deserves every credit for renewed French success in the contest.

We wish Edoardo well for the future and await further news from France 2 on their Eurovision 2019 plans.

YOU CAN GET MORE FRANCE EUROVISION NEWS HERE

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CyxCy
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CyxCy

Frankly it was the worst decision to Make. What Edwoardo has done to three years is exceptional, before him Eurovision was forgotten in France, now everyone fights to do it! Unfortunately the TV channel France 2 is directed by people who are specialists in this type of errors (firing good animators to put bad ones, cancel good shows to put a bad series instead, and this is only the end of a Too long list). I hope that the director of France 2 will soon finish her mandate and leave her place to someone more competent. (in france, the boss… Read more »

Mini Min
Guest
Mini Min

Not a sad news at all. He was only in the job for 3 years and I think he wanted to leave on a high note so that he can move onto better opportunities. He at least gave the French delegation fresh ideas and now they know what direction to go to next.

Henrikh Mugosa
Guest
Henrikh Mugosa

Yeah right! The guy wanted to leave on a high note, that’s why he left after achieving his worst result….. It makes complete sense!

Gino
Guest
Gino

So…was France so sad about Madame Monsieur result? MM wanted simplicity, but it seems less is not always more. They needed a screen with pictures like Germany, or should I say it??………..LED

James
Guest
James

How would you want to to stage Madame Monsieur’s performance if you were their stage director?

brennan
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brennan

problematic

Dame Tu Conchita
Guest
Dame Tu Conchita

Booooooooo. I like Edoardo.

James
Guest
James

Hopefully the same does not happen to Nicola Caligiore (Italy).

yellowman96
Guest
yellowman96

Well that was such a backstabbing in the back… well what comes around comes around…

Henrikh Mugosa
Guest
Henrikh Mugosa

Oh boy, this is cruel! This is some heart-breaking piece of news. When you consider Grassi’s efforts & enthusiasm. It’s someone’s dream being crushed to bits and we’re watching it helplessly. I knew France had to get a Top5/top3 result in 2019 or his place would be at stake. I did NOT expect him to be sacked right away, though. I wished to see France win with him as HoD. I guess that won’t happen now.

Henrikh Mugosa
Guest
Henrikh Mugosa

I still think France will win the contest in the near future. Maybe in 2019 or a bit later. They’ll have to or they’ll end up breaking Portugal’s record of 48 years without a victory.

Denis
Guest
Denis

It could be bad but it can also turn out to be an even better decision. Grassi laid the foundation, now someone can continue to build it. I think France has no interest in returning back to how they used to do(why would any country), I think they are serious about take it seriously.
But who knows? Good luck to Steven!

fuego
Guest
fuego

It’s ok..now Edoardo has more time to MARRY ME. Seriously, the man is H.O.T.

Henrikh Mugosa
Guest
Henrikh Mugosa

Actually, I would rather marry Steven Clerima. “–Steven, on se marrie & fait des bébés quand tu veux!”

Roy Moreno
Guest
Roy Moreno

Welp, that came out of nowhere ._.
Why would they fire most likely the best HOD?
Yea, that’s not Sweden with their high results every year but he made such a great change in France’s results and made fans so supportive and caring about the French entry and national final
Edoardo, they can all learn from you, be proud of your work and I wish you the best of luck <3
I hope Steven will do well, let's wish him good luck as well :3

Roma
Guest
Roma

Oh I don’t like this at all.

NickC
Guest
NickC

I am sorry, but I feel that it was uncalled for, and very unfair. Can you name any other other country with such drastic reversal of fortunes? Maybe Bulgaria (but that is Borislav Milanov, more than BNT) and Israel (and that is more Daron Medalie more than KAN). I think people who bring consistently good results should be promoted, not fired,

Dony
Guest
Dony

This surprised me but he only had one real success: Amir. Alma and Madame Monsieur both placed outside of the top 10. Madame Monsieur was even a bookie favorite to win and still majorly under-performed those expectations. If Edwardo’s track record had been flawless this news would be unfair, but his track record wasn’t THAT great. He had beginners luck and never really kept the momentum. I still feel sorry for him though. He wanted to make Eurovision cool again to the French public. Hopefully the next HoD feels the same way.

Campbell Grace
Guest
Campbell Grace

Considering France’s results 2011-2015, I’d consider it a success…

James
Guest
James

Is he still involved with France’s JESC return this year despite the news?

Skiwalko
Guest
Skiwalko

Well, good job Eduardo, I wish your successor will develope that wonderful show you’ve created, and bonne chance la France!

Vanuatu
Guest
Vanuatu

looks a bad decision, but time will tell. lets have faith on the new HoD

Jonas
Guest
Jonas

I guess this could be a could thing. Be careful what you wish for – Edoardo wanted the broadcaster to take the contest more seriously, and hopefully this is just an example of him having achieved his goal. Like Mary Poppins, his work his done and now he must go.

Andy Lamp
Guest

collective gasp!

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Guest
Mr. Vanilla Bean

“100% in house control”. I’m curious to hear and see the result of that. Hopefully not like the 100% in house control the German broadcaster had before and after Stefan Raab’s involvement (with the exception of 2018, result-wise). Not that I liked his creation but the success was tremendous.

Jack
Guest
Jack

There is no doubt that Grassi brought back a lot of effort, enthusiasm and momentum for France at ESC along with boosting viewing figures but the ego and arrogance got the best of him this year when it came to all the mass hype over Madame Monsieur who were favorites only to kill all their chances with a car crash performance which led to bombing on televote that wasn’t surprising whatsoever, very lucky to barely scrape on the left-hand side too. Steven Clerima still has a tough job to follow and keep France on track but he should also focus… Read more »

Joe
Guest
Joe

I hope they know what they’re doing.

Sabrina
Guest
Sabrina

I’m curious to know what Edoardo has to say about it. At first, it seems like a bad move from France, unless he was the one that asked to leave. I feel like his work there was just starting to get the results they deserve. I hope at least his substitute is someone skilled an that will follow the ideas that were being implemented. If Edoardo still wants to work with Eurovision, I wonder if another country can use his talents.

Jonas
Guest
Jonas

If they sink in 2019, they can always ask him back in 2020.

Sabrina
Guest
Sabrina

Sure, but it depends on how “peaceful” was this decision.

Joe
Guest
Joe

(send him to the UK, send him to the UK, send him to the UK…)

Sabrina
Guest
Sabrina

That was actually my first thought! BBC could at least call him to talk to those running You Decide.

It's the BBC's fault, not the UK's
Guest
It's the BBC's fault, not the UK's

I hope this doesn’t mean back to awful results for France again! Edoardo brought France back into the right track after years of dreadful results. Anyway, fingers crossed this new HoD is good!