Christophe Dechavanne was born on January 23, 1958 in the 16th arrondissement of Paris. He is the son of a developer-dealer father and a journalist-freelancer mother. From the age of 16, the host made his first TV appearance on the second color channel of the ORTF in the program Le Grand Échiquier by journalist Jacques Chancel. In 1975, he also made an appearance in the documentary De Paris et d’ailleurs.
After working for a few years in real estate renovating apartments, Christophe Dechavanne gave up everything in 1982 to start a career in radio. It was not until 1983 that he made his debut as a TV host on TF1 in the show Super Défi. A disastrous first experience for the host: “I was bad, maybe badly surrounded. I had to comment on parts of Pacman or Tetris for eight minutes. On the other hand, as we were scheduled just after the Tour de France, we had enormous audiences. I was immediately entitled to my first paper in “Le Figaro” titled: “Super Challenge, mini spite”. This first criticism, it was awful. Frankly, if you are a little fragile, you throw yourself from the second. Me, it rather motivated me to hang on, ”he explained to Télé Obs in 2013.
The presenter was then recruited on Antenne 2 to present the daily program C’est encore mieux l’après-midi before returning to TF1 at the end of the 1980s. It was on this channel that Christophe Dechavanne became very popular with its programs Ciel, mon mardi! and hello it’s us! : “Imagine: we had 3 million viewers at midnight with “Ciel, mon mardi!” and we were up to 70% market share at 1 a.m. “Heaven, my Tuesday!” was new at the time. Admittedly, before me, there had been Polac and his “Right of reply”. But it was a more militant, more politicized, more intellectual television, made with people from the seraglio, journalists. Me, with “Ciel, mon mardi!”, I was doing an anonymous TV show. We discovered our next-door neighbors, foot fetishists, lovers of priests, victims of female circumcision, inmates serving long sentences. We also did the first program on contaminated blood”, he confided to our colleagues from Télé Obs.
After the end of these shows, the host had a slight slump before coming back in force in 2003 with La Ferme Celebrities alongside his lifelong sidekick, Patrice Carmouze. Thereafter, we find the animator at the head of television games including The Wheel of Fortune, A Golden Family or even I am a celebrity, get me out of there.
In January 2006, Christophe Dechavanne made the front page of people news. Indeed, the magazine Shock has published photos of the animator completely naked, from the front, alongside a woman named Zivar. The photos were taken on January 2, 2016, while the star was on vacation at the Huvafen, a luxury hotel in the Maldives Islands. A month later, the host obtains the withdrawal of the kiosks of the number concerned, by decision of the president of the tribunal de grande instance of Paris.
After going to court, the host obtained a provision of 15,000 euros in damages. For his lawyer Me Stefanaggi: “this decision to withdraw is a great victory, because these photos are a violent and unprecedented intrusion into the private sphere. (…) The decision clearly recalls the inalienable rights of the person, even in the face of freedom of the press, especially since there is absolutely no need to inform”, reports our colleagues from the Nouvel Obs.
On May 17, 2012, the flagship host of TF1 almost saw the end of the tunnel. While he was on the island of Bali in Indonesia, he was hit head-on by a motorcyclist who threw him onto the side of the road. An accident that left him with serious injuries: “So here it is: I was on foot, a biker surely found me very attractive because he mowed me down at around 40 km/h. Result: a polytrauma victim, me. It was May 17. I managed the thing in my corner. A lot of small fractures. Nose, sinus bone, foot, right jawbone, left calf and left wrist. Alive! Thank you to the lucky star that allows me to ‘talk’ to you calmly now. You still have me on your back friends for a while”, he commented on his Twitter account. An accident that could well have cost him his life.
Invited in May 2016 on the set of Thierry Ardisson’s show Salut les Terriens, Christophe Dechavanne returned to a painful episode in his life: the disappearance of his father, who died of alcoholism. “It’s a disease, a real disease. That’s why you shouldn’t make fun of people. Me, I was touched by someone very very close who died very young: my father, who died of alcoholism at 54 brooms. He died of that, so I know that very, very well. (…) Normally, alcoholics are in total denial, so it’s very good to have a testimony like yours,” he said.
A drama that is not the only one since in July 2016, Christophe Dechavanne reveals in the program Dans le retro to have lost his mother and his sister, who disappeared at the age of 60. When journalist Déborah Grunwald asked him what he would like to relive if he could go back to the past, the host was overwhelmed with emotion: “You stir me things that are a little complicated and deep, it does things to me sad”. After which the journalist asked him if it had to do with relatives who left earlier: “Yes, my sister, my mother, my father. It’s a lot. My sister, at the age of 60, not long ago. It sucks,” he said.
On the occasion of the broadcast of a documentary on TV from the 80s, C à vous received Gérard Louvin and Christophe Dechavanne in January 2018. The latter was interviewed by host Anne-Elisabeth Lemoine on her show C’ is even better in the afternoon, broadcast between 1985 and 1987. A program whose “Play mec” sequence (men chosen at random from the audience to undress on the set) caused a stir at the time.
“I’m not particularly attracted to boys in underwear, but it was a good idea. Except that we had a few miscellaneous facts… Do you remember the Thierry Paulin affair, which was atrocious, with these two horrible guys who cut the throats of old women? Well, I hope it’s not one of the two, but I know we had it in play man”, he explained while an excerpt from the show was broadcast.
On the private side, the host is the father of three children, born of three different mothers. His daughter Ninon Dechavanne was raised alone by the host: “My mother, I haven’t seen her for many years. My father has been raising me alone since I was eight years old. I only reconnected with her a year ago. Now I see her from time to time. I don’t want to have any regrets later and tell me that I was wrong to break off the dialogue. I have taken a step back from what may have happened in the past in our lives so that we get there“, she confided to the magazine Gala in December 2018.
Very close to her father, the young woman does not hesitate to regularly post photos of them on her social networks.
Invited to the program C à vous, on September 29, 2022, the host Christophe Dechavanne came out of silence about his detractors who claim that he would be “unbearable to produce”. This is what producer Alexia Laroche-Joubert expressed. “He has a hell of a character, he’s unbearable to produce, he knows it, I’ve already told him. We slammed doors in the face like never before, I think he’s the guy I’ve more yelled at,” she said, as Closer recalled.
A negative reputation that he can no longer bear to hear. “When there are people who say ‘Dechavanne, he doesn’t like people’, I want to blow their noses. One day, at TF1, I was told: ‘You’re odious with the technicians’ Those of today, they are younger and I know them less well, but, without kidding, there is not a guy in my profession who knew the technicians by their first names. and to add: “I have always been close to the people who work with us, who sometimes waited for me, to their great displeasure, because I was late for the recordings”.