At the dawn of the next Micros d’Or ceremony, on December 15 in Morzine in front of the Sport cameras in France, a dive behind the scenes and the secrets of the event. For this first opus, Jean-Marc Michel, creator of this meeting which rewards each year the best audio-visual reports, makes the presentations and looks back on the history of the “Micros”.
The “Micros d’Or”, kézako?
This is an initiative to highlight the work of journalists. The televiewer, the listener do not find themselves there any more in the talk shows or do not make any more the difference between the journalist, the columnist or the consultant. However, journalism is a real profession, it is reporting and precisely, this profession, we want to showcase it. The festival is about reporting on all sports. We are sponsored by the Olympic committee. All Olympic and non-Olympic sports. The festival covers all disciplines. Fifty volunteers are working on it. At the beginning, we shot about fifteen and now, if only for the event in Morzine, we need about fifteen drivers, IT specialists and people who deal with social networks. It takes time and it’s a lot of work.
How did the idea of the “Micros d’Or” germinate?
Talk shows were developing and frankly, the profession of journalist is a profession often maligned and which deserves to be looked at closely. The reports are superb and that’s what makes the beauty and highlights the passion of journalists, because it’s a job but also a passion. At the time, when I created this, with Henri Sérandour, who was president of the CNOSF, we were coming back from the Games and he said to me: “Jean-Marc, you see, an Olympic medal does not have the same value according to the discipline practiced. And he wasn’t wrong. I said to him: “If you want, we can create a demonstration. We already have a meeting in the mountains, we can launch an event with the DTNs and the champions of the non-mediatised disciplines and like that, they spend three days with their DTNs”. At the time, we were shooting with nearly 600 journalists. Since then, we have lowered the gauge and refined the project, but always keeping the same basic premise.
Why a mountain resort and not Paris? Why Morzine now?
Paris is expensive and nobody comes. That’s why we opted for the mountains. Some of the people in our profession make their first descents during the Micros d’Or festival. Since the 80s, we have moved. We did Tignes, Les Arcs and the 1950 village for about ten years. Afterwards, we went to Méribel, to Courchevel. These are very expensive stations. We did not stay as long as we would have liked. We went abroad to Crans-Montana (Switzerland) for two years and then we came back to France in Chamonix and here we are in Morzine. I would like to find a station that identifies us, a bit like the Cannes Film Festival. The Film Festival is in Cannes. I would like the Micros d’Or festival to find a base as well.
Juan Antonio Samaranch, Pelé, Estanguet…
The “Micros d’Or” over the years…
During the first year, among the first recipients, there was a certain Didier Roustan who had done a magazine report entitled “Dance with Wolves”. It was a report on Olympique de Marseille and who won the timpani for the first time. Then, we expanded the categories. We included the radio, which was not on the program at the start. We also differentiated the work of journalists on the television news because the animation of a report in a news, it is of the order of 2 or 3 minutes maximum, compared to the magazine. I also had smart guys who, at one time, understood that if you put a sick or disabled person in the story, the emotional side would take precedence over all the others. That’s what happened for three years. I understood the manipulation and suddenly, I made disabled sports categories. That way, everyone is on an equal footing. There were well-crafted reports that didn’t pick up the timpani because the guys had the emotional side that always rocked. Afterwards, of course, we always try to evolve with the times. Since last year, for example, there is a digital category and another category on eco-responsible sport.
When you look at all the people we were able to receive: the champions, the presidents of the jury… We still had Juan Antonio Samaranch when he was president of the IOC, we had Pelé, the Prince de Mérode… Next year, we hope to have Prince Albert of Monaco. Among the champions, we can mention Tony Estanguet, Clarisse Agbegnenou last year. If we take them all, it’s out of the ordinary.
A preview of the next edition?
In the next jury, there will be a lot of rugby players because we are making a nod to next year’s World Cup (in France). But I would always have disabled sports, champions and people who are fighting to become such, as well as Olympic sports. There will be a gymnast Samir Aït Saïd and other champions of other individual disciplines, because for team sports, it is more complicated because they are all in competition.
The next Micros d’Or ceremony will take place on December 15 in Morzine. It will be broadcast on the free Sport channel in France (available on channel 174 at Orange and Sosh, channel 192 at Bouygues Télécom, channel 190 at Free and channel 129 at SFR and Red) from 8:00 p.m.
Previously, Sport in France will offer a program on the “Micros d’Or” as well as a program on the Prix Sport Scriptum, which rewards the most beautiful sports book of the year. A prize also created by Jean-Marc Michel, honorary president of the UJSF (Union of sports journalists in France).