Since his Eurovision journey started two years ago, Bilal Hassani has made it clear he’s a long-time Eurovision fan. And on Monday he used not only the eyes of a fan but also the experience of being a former representative to assess France’s fortunes at the Eurovision Song Contest.
Speaking on the radio show Ça fait du bien, the LGBTQ icon gave his diagnosis for France’s many lows since it last won with Marie Myriam in 1977. Without questioning the talent of the artists or their chosen songs, he suggested the country’s failures come down to its attitude to Eurovision. He thinks there is a lack of positivity and optimism at large.
“We’ll win when we stop thinking we’re losers,” he said. “Because that mentality sends the wrong signal to the universe, and it makes us repeat that story.”
Bilal Hassani readily admits that he approached Tel Aviv with the enthusiasm of someone happy just to be taking part, rather than as someone with the naked ambition to win.
“I went to Eurovision in the spirit of participation. I said to myself, ‘I’m doing Eurovision, it’s crazy’, and that’s all I remembered.”
Building on his own love of the contest, he wishes France would cherish the fact that it’s an automatic qualifier — and that it has the guaranteed opportunity to take part in the grand final.
France at Eurovision 2021
As far we already know, Tom Leeb will not represent France in 2021. In June, France’s Head of Delegation Alexandra Redde-Amiel confirmed that France will use a new national selection format named Eurovision France, c’est vous qui décidez. This show replaces the most recent selection format Destination Eurovision.
Redde-Amiel also confirmed that the show will be produced in-house and hosted in a French regional city by French Eurovision commentator Stephan Bern. The national final will involve a public vote, but producers have not yet confirmed whether the show will also have a jury vote.
France Télévisions is currently looking for contestants. Applications remain open until September 30.
What do you think about Bilal’s analysis? Is he right? Should French contestants change their attitude for Eurovision 2021? Tell us your thoughts below.