Nicolas Pinson graduated from the theater option at Cégep Lionel-Groulx in 2001. And yet, his acting career only started in 2012, after a decade of drugs and self-destruction. “I’ve played stoned before. I got kicked out of some places. I was not of the world. »

This troubled period, during which Nicolas Pinson followed a few rehabs and reached several lowlands, inspired Good morning Chuck (or the art of harm reduction), a new series expected Wednesday on Crave.

Directed by Jean-François Rivard (C’est comme ça que je t’aime, Les invincibles) and Mathieu Cyr (Between the Sea and the Bark), this dramatic comedy in 10 episodes depicts the descent into hell of a star animator who suffers from addiction. We’re talking about a major consumer problem, the kind that pushes people away, attracts the cops, and leads you on one of the filthiest threesomes in history down the toilet of a seedy threesome pub. o’clock in the morning on a Tuesday.

In an interview, Nicolas Pinson claims to be “a transparent person”. The expression seems well chosen. The openness with which he recounts his journey is disarming.

The idea behind Good Morning Chuck (or the art of harm reduction) comes from Nicolas Pinson, Mathieu Cyr, Émilie Lemay-Perreault and Jean-François Rivard. The latter then took over the writing with Sarianne Cormier and Patrick Dupuis.

Nicolas Pinson describes the experience as “therapeutic”. We can certainly imagine why.

We can also conceive that after several years of addiction, shooting scenes of consumption and total annihilation will bring back past traumas that we are trying to forget. In other words, a drug addict who voluntarily plunges back into the heart of a quagmire in which he has been bogged down time and time again appears to us – even fictitiously – a tad dangerous…

“It was a trigger [trigger]”, concedes the main interested party.

As an example, he recounts the filming of a sequence during which he had to put on lines of cocaine, or rather powdered lactose, the substance that actors usually snort on screen.

“When I made my first track, the physical memory came back to me. I went, “Oh my god!” It took me back. It woke up something, a feeling… The eyes, the tics, the physique… It was crazy stiff! But it was lactose. »

“All my life, these are things that will remain. These are cerebral paths that are all traced, ”points out the actor.

Nicolas Pinson was visibly emotional last week at the press viewing of the first episodes of Good morning Chuck (or the art of harm reduction). At the microphone after the screening, the actor struggled to hold back his tears. He had experienced the same thing in April at the Canneseries festival, where the offering of St Laurent TV productions (La maison des fous, Amours d’occasion) was presented in official competition.

Because in addition to being a hyper personal project, Good morning Chuck could mark a turning point in the professional itinerary of the actor. In recent years, his name has appeared in the credits of a few TV series, but never in lead roles: “taxi driver” in My Mother, “night receptionist” in Hotel, and “Monsieur Bélanger” in Indéfendable.

“It’s my first big lead,” he explains. I’m in almost every scene. »

Indeed, Nicolas Pinson participated in 59 of the 60 shooting days of Good morning Chuck, last fall. Before starting this blitz, the actor retained the services of a game coach, Eve Landry, and trained by running five kilometers daily in Eastman, in his part of the country in Estrie. All while singing loudly with his headphones.

Regardless of Nicolas Pinson’s reputation among Eastern Townships cycling enthusiasts, his preparatory work has paid off. During a round table bringing together half a dozen journalists, Jean-François Rivard vigorously praised his talent.

“I discovered an actor that I want to work with all the time,” said the writer and director. I discovered a comedian chalice christie, which is game to go in all sorts of areas. It’s not easy, what he had to play. When we look at the scenes, during the editing, we are like: “Crisse that it is good!” I’m a fan. »

These comments are worth their weight in gold for Nicolas Pinson. “I was someone who wanted so much to be loved by everyone,” he breathes.

Although he doesn’t have many projects in the works, besides a potential second season of Good Morning Chuck, Nicolas Pinson seems to have found his way in the industry.

“I was always waiting for a role, waiting for the phone call. As soon as I stopped using, I took my business in hand. I started writing Nico vous simmer [a web series that spanned three seasons, from 2015 to 2017], and everyone got on board, even my friends, who stuck with me despite all the pain I have done. »