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Meet Rémi Gaillard: French YouTuber Activist and Entertainer

Meet Rémi Gaillard: French YouTuber Activist and Entertainer

Rémi Gaillard: A Look Back at his Dazzling Career

Born on February 7, 1975, in Montpellier, France, Rémi Gaillard is one of the best-known comedians in France. Passionate about soccer, he is known today for the viral videos he shares mainly on YouTube.

If his success is not to be questioned anymore, it is necessary to know that his career was not a restful one. Here’s a retrospective of his career, from his debut as a footballer, through the creation of his website to the fame he has now acquired in France and around the world.

Yves Tennevin, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

From Soccer to his First Video

Born in Hérault (a French southern county), Rémi Gaillard is a great supporter of the Montpellier club. As a passionate soccer fan, he joined the Crès team during his youth and early adulthood. However, it is a club playing in the honorary division and a soccer career does not seem to be an option for him.

After a period during which he accumulates odd jobs, Rémi Gaillard decides to follow a new path. In 1999, Rémi Gaillard and his friend Steve used his parents’ camera to shoot their first video.

It is a video showing the famous YouTuber and his friend taking a shower in a car wash. In front of the camera and the eyes of those who watch him, Rémi Gaillard does not hesitate to shower completely naked. At the time, he probably couldn’t have imagined that this video of him playing soccer would be the first of a long series that would make him successful over the next 20 years.

Rémi Gaillard
Instagram @gaillardremi

Creation of his Own Website

At the end of the 90s, sites like YouTube or Dailymotion (The French Youtube) had not yet seen the light of day. To broadcast content, Rémi Gaillard then decided to create his own website on which he could share his videos with Internet users.

The humorist generally relies on comical situations and imposture to make his audience laugh. His outrageous and uninhibited behavior makes him successful and he doesn’t intend to change his leitmotiv, no matter what critics he may hear.

Thanks to his website, he is able to reach a large audience in France who are just beginning to use the internet. For Internet users, Rémi Gaillard’s videos are a way to relax, laugh and forget the stress of everyday life. Among his first creations, it is possible to quote for example :

  • Lapin (=Rabbit)
  • Vendredi 13 (=Friday 13th)
  • Disc-Jockey
  • Free MCDO 

Rémi Gaillard: A Working Method Based on Inspiration and Improvisation

In an interview published on the Le Parisien website, the Montpellier comedian quotes: “I never have a pre-established plan. I walk around the shelves, find a costume and go into town. “That’s how Rémi Gaillard creates all his videos.

With a costume, a camera, and good humor, he can create humorous content for Internet users. In fact, his way of working is perfectly represented by his well known motto  « C’est en faisant n’importe quoi qu’on devient n’importe qui ». translated into English “It’s by doing anything that you become anyone”.

During his first years in front of the camera, Rémi Gaillard began to make a name for himself little by little. But it was during the 2000s that his career took a new turn.

Discovery of the General Public

Thanks to the videos published on his site, Rémi Gaillard attracts the attention of the biggest television channels. For him, it is a real way to make himself known in the eyes of the general public. Thus, he started working for the music channel MCM in 2001. The following year, he was recruited by the famous magazine Entrevue.

Through these experiences, he begins to understand how the audiovisual world works. Moreover, his name will be mentioned in several polemics with other French humorists (we will come back to this later) because of certain disputes.

During the 2000s, Rémi Gaillard made his first television appearances. He became known for his various intrusions during major events:

  • Intrusion on the podium of Mister Universe to pose with bodybuilders
  • Appearance during an exhibition match between Yannick Noah and Henri Leconte
  • Arrives on the set of Questions for a champion and pranked Julien Lepers

Nevertheless, its most remarkable fact remains undoubtedly its appearance in the final of the French Football Cup in 2002. At the time, he decided to disguise himself as a player of FC Lorient, a club that had just won the title. By mixing with the team, the president of the time, Jacques Chirac, would have even said to him “Congratulations, well done! ». During this experience, he even had the opportunity to touch the trophy and sign autographs for the team’s fans.

For several years afterward, he never stopped appearing on several well-known events and shows that were a favorite with the French: Des chiffres et des lettres, Confessions intimes… Nevertheless, he was also a guest on the famous Canal+ show “Le Grand Journal” in 2007.

Fakes, intrusions, and hidden cameras are among Rémi Gaillard’s specialties. In these videos, he doesn’t hesitate to trap passers-by in the street or during major sporting events, all to the delight of his audience!

Rémi Gaillard and his Fame on the Internet

In the beginning, his success depended mainly on the views on his website and the tapes he was able to sell. Indeed, the means to make himself known at the time were still quite limited compared to today.

However, Rémi Gaillard began to establish his notoriety thanks to the creation of platforms such as YouTube and Dailymotion. Thus, he shares his videos on these platforms, which are freely accessible to Internet users. As time goes by, he becomes more and more famous and visitors eagerly await his new videos.

Today, Rémi Gaillard is better known as a YouTuber. Indeed, YouTube is the most visited streaming platform in the world and he intends to use it to his benefit. To date, he counts around 7 million subscribers on his YouTube channel.

In 2011, it passed the mark of one billion cumulative views on all its videos. In 2013, it would have reached nearly 1.5 billion cumulative views on YouTube and Dailymotion. This record is not insignificant, and it clearly shows that his gag videos unleash passions.

Focus on his most famous videos

On its YouTube channel, it is possible to see that some videos were successful. With his imagination and his mastery of imposture, Rémi Gaillard was able to create unique and wacky content. Here’s a look back at his videos that were a great success.

Mario Kart in Montpellier

In this video, the first part of which appeared in 2008 and the second part in 2011, Rémi Gaillard disguises himself as the famous video game character Mario. Here, he is inspired by the game “Mario Kart” and drives his kart in the streets of Montpellier. Pursued by scooters and cars, he uses the famous bananas of the game to divert his competitors from the right path. Of course, Rémi finishes the race in first place. On Youtube, this video has nearly 77 million views.

Pac-man in real life

All children of the ’90s and 2000s must be familiar with the Pac-man video game. In this gag, Rémi Gaillard takes on the identity of the game’s protagonist and crashes into a supermarket. Then, Pac-man and his friends go to a golf course and disrupt the golfers’ session there. Finally, Rémi goes to a billiard room to make a mess.

Elevator Pranks

Among Rémi Gaillard’s funniest videos are also the elevator gags. Here, the famous comedian takes on several types of appearances in order to play a dirty trick on the people who venture there: Sonic, The Godfather, a rat… Obviously, those who are trapped don’t know how to behave, but quickly realize that it’s a joke.

Rémi Gaillard and Tony Parker

In one of his videos, Rémi Gaillard is on Tony Parker’s training field. The two challenge each other to take shots from midfield. While Tony Parker throws his ball with his hand, our French comedian remembers his good hours as a footballer by scoring shots right in the basket. With this video, Rémi Gaillard shows that he has a very good relationship with world-famous personalities.

Rémi Gaillard Facing Certain Controversies

In the mid-2000s, the name Rémi Gaillard is mentioned in some controversies. Among the best-known, is his accusation of plagiarism against the program Morning Live of M6. Indeed, following an intrusion on this famous show, he would have left a cassette to Michaël Youn. However, Rémi Gaillard accuses the show directed by Michaël Youn of having plagiarized a large part of his ideas.

In 2015, he published a video entitled “Dog”. In this video, he disguises himself as a dog and a sequence shows the comedian simulating a doggy style with a vacationer. Very quickly, this video became controversial. He is accused of inciting rape and sexual assault through this video. Nevertheless, Rémi Gaillard defends himself by saying that he wants to convey an even more important message: the defense of the animal cause.

Rémi Gaillard: A Great Defender of the Animal Cause

For the past few years, Rémi Gaillard has been a fervent defender of the animal cause. In 2015, he will be vilifying himself as a dog to denounce the abandonment of animals in the streets and in public spaces in general. Indeed, he is counting on his notoriety to denounce animal abuse. Most of his videos now on his YouTube channel are oriented toward animal protection.

In 2016, he commented on a hidden camera video that denounces the suffering of animals in the slaughterhouses of Pézenas, Hérault, and Mercantour. Following this video, he invites his audience to reduce their consumption of meat and turn to veganism.

In November 2016, he locked himself up for 24 hours in a cage at the SPA of Montpellier in order to sensitize French people to the defense of the animal cause and to raise funds. His event was filmed live on Facebook and he was able to collect nearly 150,000 euros in the space of 24 hours, between November 12 and 13. For this, he received the support of big names such as Louis Nicollin (President of the Montpellier club), footballers Hatem Ben Arfa, Geoffrey Jourdren, Laurent Pionnier, or the singers Soprano, Christophe Maé, and Black M.

Thanks to this event, many animals have been adopted and welcomed to specialized centers. Thus, Rémi Gaillard was able to demonstrate his determination to protect animals.

Rémi Gaillard Enters into Politic

In February 2020, Rémi Gaillard decided to embark on a political career. Indeed, he runs for the municipal elections of Montpellier. For his electoral propaganda, the French comedian decided not to use traditional methods. Indeed, a fervent defender of ecology, he did not distribute any leaflets in the city but rather chose to use the Internet to convince voters.

Following his original campaign, Rémi Gaillard managed to reach 9.58% in the first round. Although this was not enough, he decided to ally himself with Alenka Doulain and Clothilde Ollier. Subsequently, Mohamed Altrad proposed to the trio an agreement in order to obtain their support. However, this was not enough because he finished third in the second-round elections.

Despite all this, Rémi Gaillard does not intend to run for the Regionals. Indeed, he does not wish to compete with Carole Delga who has already confirmed her support for the creation of an animal park. However, the French humorist promises to return for the next election campaign in the coming years.

I hope you’ve learned more about Rémi Gaillard. If you want to discover some more French YouTubers, I invite you to read my article where I listed some current French YouTubers.