In 1745, when Jeanne-Antoinette Poisson came to King
Louis XV's attention, she transformed herself into
Madame de Pompadour and became his mistress and
confidante. Poisson was given rooms at Versailles, and,
though she was the king's lover for only five years, she
remained his close adviser until her death. This
production tells the story of their relationship.
Filming began April 14.
2006 and continued through mid-June
under the direction of Robin Davis. Eight days of filming took place at the Chateau de
Chantilly, a stand-in for the Versailles Palace. With a budget of
five million euros, it was
an expensive production involving
many sets, costumes and wigs. The TV title was
called "Jeanne Poisson, Marquise de Pompadour"
Co-star Hélène de Fougerolles
"Talk about filming with one of the most
beautiful French actors of his generation, you ask? Not unpleasant.
I must admit that at the time of Queen Margot, I was madly in
love with him. I remember I was only 19 years, and I was supposed to
hold the door for him in a scene. It was my great moment of emotion.
And now here I am Pompadour and it is he who runs after me! He has
an elegance that is absolutely astounding when he's in costume."
playing the King:
Louis XV did not remain beloved for a long time. He was very popular
at the beginning of his reign until he was obliged to publicly confess his
wanton morals, rather incompatible with his title of a 'very Christian'
king. In the end he survived but his reputation was sullied forever!
Obviously, he liked to escape from its responsibilities. He had
courtesans... That amuses me. I played him very macho. His relationship with
Pompadour - his sincere love and endurance for this woman, sensible and
intelligent from a different world - is interesting from the point of view
that she evokes changes for women. He learns how to listen to them, to
respect them, etc ".
On preparing for the role:
Vincent said he read up on the king to give depth to his character.
He says, "For example, Louis XV was a very conservative king, marked
by the figure of his great-grandfather Louis XIV. He had, in particular, a
panic-like fear of God. He was really paralyzed by the fear of death, of
punishment. He saw signs everywhere. It was one of his essential
characteristics, a point on which Pompadour, resolutely atheistic, was in
opposition with him... To incarnate the King, I
studied the codes of conduct with a historical adviser in the manner of
speaking, moving and greeting. The King has to exude authority. Dress and
speech are useful to me. With the wigs and costumes, I isolate myself within
Helene de Fourgerolles.....Jeanne
Vincent Perez.....King Louis XV
Charlotte de Turckheim.....Queen mother
Charlotte Valandrey.....Madame de Brancas
by.....Alexandra de Broca, Jacques
Forgeas and Olivier Pouponneau
Cinematography by.....Yves Lafaye
Aired in two parts on France 2 TV
on October 16 and 17, 2006
Released on DVD on November 8, 2006