Lefevere confirms Netflix Tour de France project details with preliminary filming set to begin soon

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Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl boss Patrick Lefevere has confirmed that his team is in talks with Netflix about a Tour de France documentary, and that while the initial financial rewards are “peanuts”, the filming will tentatively begin this month with a film crew cleared to enter the Belgian Crew Service Course.

written in his weekly Het Nieuwsblad column, Lefevere said he reached a verbal agreement on filming next week.

He also claimed that UAE Team Emirates would not be part of the project. BikeNews heard that participating teams would only receive a small amount of money up front, and a revenue split would be established based on the success and popularity of the series. BikeNews has contacted UAE Team Emirates for comment.

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“Ideally, the next Netflix series takes everyone in cycling to the next level. And then I hope that the contribution to the teams will increase accordingly. If not, I will do my own series again. And it goes to the highest bidder in the market,” Lefevere wrote in Saturday’s column.

The telegraph announced Netflix’s plans and confirmed that Tour de France organizers ASO, Netflix and a number of teams were set to participate in filming. Lefevere confirmed that his team’s participation had been verbally agreed, but he stressed that the finances of the deal needed to improve in the future if his team was to be retained.

“We are one of the teams working with them. So much so that people are already coming to our service course next week to make the first recordings. The other teams make different choices. For example, UAE Team Emirates does not participate. And I understand why. Financially – certainly for the teams – it’s peanuts. ASO goes to checkout first and then, as usual, there are few left. I have now committed myself verbally, but with moderate enthusiasm and with reservations. If the fees for the teams do not increase in the future, it is not worth it.

Lefevere then underlined the value of a series broadcast on such a popular platform as Netflix and the success of similar projects involving Movistar and the Formula 1 series. Drive to survive. However, the Belgian team boss was also mildly concerned about the commitment needed to give a film crew the access they asked for and then demanded. According to Lefevere, the goal posts could move significantly.

“I know how it is with such documentaries. Agreements are made in advance about who and what to film, but it always comes down to the same thing: you shake hands and they want an arm. You can actually see it already: we are engaging in a “behind the scenes of the Tour” project and next week – mid-March – they will be filming in our service yard. No idea what that has to do with the Tour.

“It’s clear that as a sport we need to provide ‘content’ that goes beyond a summary of the course. To use another marketing term, it has to be storytelling. The story behind the performance, the person behind the athlete. In 2016, as a team, we made our own documentary – One Year in Blue. It contained a scene in which Marcel Kittel gathered the whole bus together after a lost sprint. Wilfried Peeters sent the cameras back, but I brought them back. Because it’s part of the story. If you remove all friction, you’re showing something that everyone knows isn’t realistic.

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