April 16, 2009

From Jean Cocteau to Jean Marais

On 27 April, at Drouot, will be sold personal proterty of Jean Marais, which includes books, autographs and manuscripts. One of the most important and most touching piece is the correspondence of Jean Cocteau to Jean Marais. This exceptional group covers over 25 years until Cocteau's decease in 1963. Reading these letters, we are amazed by the power of the love the author brings to the young actor, met in 1937, and for whom he writes in 1938:
"My beloved Jeannot I have come to love you so strongly (more than anything in the world) that I order myself to only love you as a dad and I want you to know that this is not because that I love you less but more. "
"Jeannot stupidity of lovers is immense, vegetable, animal, astral. What to do? How can I make you realize that I no longer exist besides you."

In 1942, Jean Marais meets actress Mila Parély on the filming of Le Lit à colonnes. He falls madly in love and works again with Mila on the filming of La Belle et la Bête in 1945 under the direction of Cocteau. The author, in a letter dated from February, does not burden himself with this passion between the two actors and says:
"Mila is convinced that you will marry her - after all it would not be so bad. She said :" I have to know because then I would change my life "(with a very serious air )...".

Over the years, the letters keep the same intensity:
"My Jeannot you can imagine my happiness to have spent a few days with you. I waited until the plane disappeared over the mountains with the heart in the throat. And then, in the car, I wanted crying ... " (July 11, 1952)
"My good angel I am back to repeat "l'Aigle". "I did not want to replace the irreplaceable, which would be a ridiculous attempt. I try to tame a young unknown [...] How to reach you? Your Jean." (June 4, 1960).

Succession of Mister Jean Marais
Consultant for books, manuscripts and autographs : M. Erwan de Kerangué - Librairie Loliée
Public exhibitions : Friday 24 April and Saturday 25 April from 11h00 to 18h00.
Auction : Monday 27, april at Drouot.

For the catalogue, please contact Fraysse & Associés : +33 (0)1 53 45 92 10.
Photo : Studio Sebert.