On March 29th, the Victorine Festival opened in Nice, celebrating the birth of the eponymous cinematic studio one century ago. About sixty films will be screened in the mar-alpine city. The opportunity to return to this legendary place of the seventh art, which might soon be rehabilitated.
As we know, the meeting between Prince Rainier III and Grace Kelly took place in Cannes, during a photo shoot. But a few years ago, the American actress had visited another area of the Côte d’Azur. Star of To Catch a Thief by Alfred Hitchcock, she also shot a few scenes at the studios of La Victorine (with shots outside the Monegasque Rock, as the story goes…). It must be said that since its founding in 1919, this place dedicated to cinema has hosted many stars of the big screen. Le Corniaud, Les Enfants du paradis, Et Dieu… créa la femme, Mon Oncle and La Vérité sur Bébé Donge were all made, at least partly, in the enclosure created by the site. Day for Night, a feature film by François Truffaut was subject to a grueling shoot, has made the place a full-fledged icon and gave it legendary status in the world of cinema.
A birthday… and renovations?
The Victorine’s hundred-year mark is already the occasion of a beautiful retrospective. In Nice, great movies, which were shot there, will be screened until April 6th in different cinemas around the city. A little reminder for inhabitants of the region of all the potential of a space whose return to grace seems to be a real objective for local actors. Redeemed by the City of Nice in 2017, the studios are the subject of a steering committee, composed of multiple personalities, which is reflecting on the means that will be apportioned to the Victorine so that it can again become a pedestal of the seventh international art. Meanwhile, the studios will be open to the public as part of Heritage Days in late September, with three days of open doors.
*Article originally published on the French edition of the Monaco Tribune.