Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Miller On The Cannes Jury, 1960 (PT. 1)

Part One of this post focusses on Miller's context in relation to the event of Cannes. Part Two will focus more specifically on Miller's relation to the films.

Henry Miller sat on the jury of the Cannes Film Festival in 1960; one of five writers on the panel. In February 1960, he had been recruited by writer Georges Simenon ( "[I]t was at his insistence that I gave in," Miller told Brassai in Henry Miller, Happy Rock [1], p. 30). Simenon was that year's jury president. Miller had first heard of the "literary 'phenomenon'" of Simenon [seen at left] while he was at Big Sur, and had occassionally written to him over the years, though they never met. Miller was the most favoured of the collection of "good friends" whom Simenon had recruited to fill the jury (Intimate Memoirs by Georges Simenon, p. 475 [2]).

Miller admitted to the Paris Review (and to Brassai, [1] p. 30) that he was a "dubious choice" for the Cannes film jury because he hadn't seen many films in the previous 15 years. He assumed that the nomination was more of a tribute to his work as a writer than his cinema expertise. Miller, however, may have seemed an ideal choice to the organizers due to the prevelant subject matter at that year's fest: "Boosted in advance by popular press as having the most scandalous collection of films ever presented in a festival," wrote Cynthia Grenier of Film Quarterly (Film Quarterly, Vol. 13, No. 4, Summer 1960, p.15 [3]) ... "incest, rape, voyeurism, homosexuality and the seduction of a 12-year old."

Henry left for Europe on April 4, 1960 [ref]. He was excited about going, but for reasons other than reviewing films. He was thrilled by the opportunity to travel again: "From now on, I want to travel. Cannes is only the first milestone." ([1] p. 32). Before arriving at Cannes, he planned to meet Alfred Perles in Rome and make a few other stops in various European countries before arriving at Cannes. According to Ferguson's Henry Miller: A Life [4], Miller also took this opportunity to escape his decaying relationship with Eve McClure at home in California. Upon his arrival at Cannes, divorce papers were waiting for him (as was a mistress named Caryl Hill Thomas, but that is all part of another story). ([4] pps. 336-337). (see also Always Merry And Bright by Jay Martin, p. 453).

The 13th annual Cannes Film Festival was held from May 4 - 20, 1960. Henry refused to stay at the elegant Carlton hotel with the others. "[N]ot for a million dollars do I want to stay in that palace beseiged by journalists and photographers." Instead, he was put up at the Hotel Montfleury, "away from all the hubbub. But even here I'm harrassed" ([1] p. 37).

Besides the necessary viewing of films, Miller was also obligated to attend formal events as a member of the jury. He went to them, including a luncheon with the mayor of Cannes, but refused to wear a tuxedo. "At seventy years old, I'm not about to start wearing one" ... "Miller without a tuxedo, or no Miller." ([1] p. 37). Simenon backed Henry up on this stance.

Henry was often in the company of his old friend Brassai during this stay in Cannes. Brassai was fond of the festival, having been awarded a Most Original Film award by the Cannes jury in 1956 (Tant qu'il y aura des bêtes). Miller hoped before he'd arrived to meet Pablo Picasso, an acquaintance of Brassai's. "To know Picasso! Of course, that's one of my greatest desires," said Henry ([1] p. 85). But Henry's busy schedule left little room for a visit to Picasso (until later, when it was over). He also failed to meet any of the young European starlets he'd been promised, such as Brigitte Bardot and Sophia Loren. "I've been served nothing but widows," complained Miller to Brassai, "And middle-aged ones." ([1] p. 61)

"At first, it was terrible!" said Miller of the experience. "In fact, I almost handed in my resignation. Oh, the films were all right. Four hours a day of viewing doesn't exhaust me. But everything around it!" ([1] p. 37). Then, a few days later:

"I'm exhausted by the length of the films shown in poorly ventilated halls -- and I don't have any elbow room. Since I've been in Cannes, I haven't been myself." ([1] p. 61).

Despite Miller's complaints, Georges Simenon noted in his memoirs that Henry "look[ed] at only a few films and spen[t] most of his time playing Ping-Pong, which he loves." ([2] p. 475).

Caryl Hill joined Henry mid-way through the festival. The awards were handed out and the Cannes Film Fest came to a close on May 20th. The event had a "generally lack-lustre atmosphere," reported Cynthia Grenier. "Something went wrong with this festival. Perhaps it was too long; perhaps the absence of the usual glamourous stars." ([3] p. 15).

The following Sunday, Henry left Cannes with French actor Michel Simon for a visit to La Ciotat, followed by visits to Lawrence Durrell and other people and places in Europe.

The middle photo of Brassai [left] and Henry Miller [right] was taken by Yoshi Takata at the 1960 Cannes Film Festival, and was published in Henry Miller, Happy Rock.

19 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish you would resume writing in this blog. Great offerings thus far!

1:33 pm  
Anonymous deerfieldparksouth said...

This won't work in reality, that is what I suppose.

9:40 am  
Blogger Junda Xu said...

20151109 junda
jordan 13
adidas superstars
louis vuitton outlet
michael kors
true religion outlet
louis vuitton
nike sb
louis vuitton outlet
cheap ugg boots
cheap jordan shoes
louis vuitton
moncler jackets
sac longchamp pliage
ray ban sunglasses
michael kors outlet
canada goose jacket
fake oakley sunglasses
ugg outlet store
louis vuitton
pandora jewelry
toms outlet store
toms wedges
north face uk
tory burch outlet
jordan 8
christian louboutin uk
coach factory outlet
coach factory outlet
mulberry bags
coach factory outlet
juicy couture
michael kors uk
tommy hilfiger outlet
basketball shoes
snapbacks wholesale
cheap oakley sunglasses
coach outlet
michael kors outlet
michael kors handbags
oakley sunglasses

9:54 pm  
Blogger chenlina said...

chenlina20151120
canada goose jackets
michael kors outlet
ugg boots
ugg boots on sale
p90x
oakley sunglasses cheap
abercrombie kids
michael kors handbags
nike trainers uk
coach outlet store
coach outlet
pandora jewelry
canada goose outlet
replica watches
replica rolex watches
louis vuitton handbags
uggs clearance
abercrombie kids
fitflops sale clearance
uggs on sale
michael kors handbags
michael kors outlet
coach factory outlet
abercrombie and fitch new york
fake oakley sunglasses
coach outlet store online
nike huarache
celine handbags
kids lebron shoes
replica watches
louboutin pas cher
louis vuitton handbags
coach factory outlet
chanel handbags
coach factory outlet
louis vuitton
louis vuitton handbags
north face jackets
ugg slippers
tiffany and co

2:51 am  
Blogger mmjiaxin said...

pandora outlet
coach outlet
ugg boots
burberry outlet online
tiffany and co
coach outlet
winter jackets
north face outlet store
michael kors outlet uk
camisetas futbol baratas
ugg boots
ray-ban sunglasses
cheap nfl jersey
burberry outlet sale
ralph lauren outlet
coach outlet online
timberland shoes
cheap ray ban sunglasses
oakley sunglasses wholesale
ferragamo shoes
mm1223

9:06 pm  
Blogger chenlina said...

chenlina20160420
gucci outlet
true religion sale
kate spade handbags
gucci handbags
michael kors outlet online
michael kors
adidas nmd
michael kors uk
christian louboutin shoes
kate spade handbags
air huarache
oakley sunglasses
coach outlet store online
michael kors outlet
cheap jordan shoes
michael kors uk
asics outlet
christian louboutin outlet
nike air max 90
air max 90
nike trainers men
air jordan 13
kobe 9
louis vuitton outlet stores
louis vuitton outlet
cheap jordans
louboutin
louis vuitton handbags
longchamp handbags
jordan 13
timberland outlet
louis vuitton outlet
cheap nfl jerseys
nike air max
caoch outlet
gucci outlet
adidas superstar
tory burch outlet online
nike factory outlet
coach factory outlet
as

9:51 pm  
Blogger Gege Dai said...

vikings jerseys
nike outlet store online
golden state warriors jerseys
oklahoma city thunder
mizuno shoes
nike outlet store
houston texans jersey
minnesota vikings jersey
new york giants jersey
nike outlet online
tennessee titans jerseys
tods shoes
detroit lions jersey
cowboys jerseys
marc jacobs
boston celtics
miami heat jerseys
san diego chargers jersey
new orleans saints jerseys
vans shoes
tennessee titans jersey
salomon shoes sale
oakland raiders jerseys
abercrombie and fitch
kobe 9 elite
celine outlet online
dolphins jerseys
cheap nike shoes
houston texans jerseys
mac cosmetics sale
supra shoes sale
steelers jerseys
fred perry polo
converse shoes
tods outlet
linyuan0511

5:35 am  
Blogger Gege Dai said...

05028wangjuan3
ed hardy tshirts
jacksonville jaguars jerseys
mac cosmetics sale
golden state warriors jerseys
ferragamo outlet
philadelphia eagles jersey
detroit lions jersey
arizona cardinals jersey
green bay packers jerseys
abercrombie and fitch
oklahoma city thunder jersey
nike air max uk
bengals jersey
air max 2014
lacoste pas cher
boston celtics jerseys
san diego chargers jersey
oklahoma city thunder jerseys
fred perry polo
converse shoes
golden state warriors
foamposite shoes
cheap nike shoes
arizona cardinals jerseys
puma outlet
new england patriots jerseys
kobe 9
valentino outlet
tennessee titans jersey
jaguars jersey

11:53 pm  
Blogger mmjiaxin said...

yeezy boost 350
michael kors outlet online
http://www.kobeshoes.uk
Kanye West shoes
cheap nfl jerseys
kobe shoes
lacoste outlet
links of london sale
http://www.tiffanyandcooutletonline.us.com
michael kors outlet online
gg

10:06 pm  
Blogger Gege Dai said...

ferragamo shoes
christian louboutin outlet
michael kors outlet
north face outlet
fred perry polo shirts
nike tn pas cher
michael kors factory outlet
louis vuitton handbags
ray ban sunglasses sale
kobe 9
20161122lck

1:54 am  
Blogger Unknown said...

canada goose jackets
michael kors outlet clearance
louis vuitton handbags
ugg boots uk
canada goose jackets
cheap snapbacks
fitflops sale clearance
north face jackets
coach outlet
michael kors outlet store
chanyuan11.22

4:48 am  
Blogger John said...

true religion uk
christian louboutin uk
louis vuitton bags
ed hardy outlet
oakley vault outlet store
pandora charms
burberry outlet
polo ralph lauren
true religion outlet store
michael kors outlet online
20161209yuanyuan

9:46 am  
Blogger dong dong23 said...

ralph lauren uk
mont blanc pens
ray ban wayfarer
michael kors outlet
ugg boots
michael kors outlet
jordan outlet
rolex watches
louis vuitton belt
michael kors canada
20171.11wengdongdong

10:58 pm  
Blogger raybanoutlet001 said...

nike blazer low
nike blazer pas cher
raiders jerseys
cheap michael kors handbags
detroit lions jerseys
nike huarache
jimmy choo
michael kors handbags
oakley sunglasses
nike roshe run

8:16 pm  
Blogger Unknown said...

kobe 9
michael kors handbags
new england patriots jerseys
michael kors handbags
yeezy boost 350
redskins jerseys
cleveland cavaliers
michael kors outlet
red valentino
abercrombie and fitch

8:53 pm  
Blogger raybanoutlet001 said...

nike trainers
cleveland browns jerseys
michael kors handbags
kobe 9 elite
michael kors handbags outlet
ralph lauren pas cher
supra shoes sale
los angeles clippers jerseys
michael kors outlet

9:56 pm  
Blogger Unknown said...

nike tn
michael kors handbags
michael kors handbags
michael kors outlet
yeezy boost 350
oakley sunglasses
michael kors outlet
reebok shoes
michael kors handbags
abercrombie and fitch kids

8:36 pm  
Blogger Unknown said...

michael kors outlet
nike huarache
buffalo bills jerseys
salvatore ferragamo
moncler outlet
armani exchange outlet
jordan shoes
sac longchamp
tennessee titans jersey
yeezy boost 350 black
20170322

10:19 pm  
Blogger LCc 03 said...

tory burch shoes
cheap jordans
air max
kobe 11
nike air huarache
jordans for cheap
longchamp le pliage
basketball shoes
michael kors factory outlet
true religion outlet

12:02 am  

Post a Comment

<< Home