Daniel Grou, or "Podz," as he likes to be called, is a Gemeaux award winner with a preference for dark stories. "I don't like things that are lightweight and soapy," says the Montreal native.
Podz's penchant for the unconventional explains why he has helmed some of the most original TV out of Quebec, including the hit Radio-Canada comedy series Les Bougon, controversial in its portrayal of a family of scammers.
Grou is also the principal director on Minuit, le soir, a starkly realistic half-hour drama about three bouncers in a downtown Montreal bar who struggle with illiteracy, impotence, and debilitating loneliness.
"Minuit, le soir was supposed to be a comedy, but it ended up being quite melancholic," says Podz of the hit series written by Pierre-Yves Bernard.
"The common thread in all my work is humanity. I try to make what I do really human and emotional," adds the film-school dropout, who has worked steadily since the 1990s, honing his craft with video clips and spots.
His Gemeaux came in 2003 for the TV movie exils. His English-language helming credits include Vampire High, Drop the Beat and The Hunger. He is currently directing the much-anticipated Radio-Canada series C.A. (which stands for Conseil d'administration, or board of directors), about the erotic adventures of a group of MBA graduates.
He will start shooting the third season of Minuit, le soir this fall, and hopes to devote himself to personal projects, including a film that he describes as an "anti-romantic comedy."
"It's going to be dark, that's for sure," he says.