Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The 'Real' Charlotte Grays

Notre Dame des Graces
If you've seen the movie, Charlotte Gray, you may recognize this chapel as the place where Dominique/Charlotte Gray meets Julien towards the end of the film. I've blogged about the movie before; it's a favorite on mine. Some of it was filmed in Cajarc and in the Tarn-et-Garonne at St-Antonin-Noble-Val, as well as at this chapel outside Lacapelle-Livron. Last evening I had the opportunity to listen to a presentation by Martyn Cox, a documentary film maker who is very well acquainted with the 'real' Charlotte Grays. He worked on the documentary, Behind Enemy Lines: the Story of the Real Charlotte Grays, which was broadcast on British TV just prior to the movie premier as part of its pre-release publicity. In it, seven of the remaining women, all special agents in covert operations during WWII who parachuted into occupied France, were interviewed and their amazing stories told. As part of the evening's program, we were treated to a showing of the documentary film itself. The womens' stories of courage and determination as they helped the French Resistance disrupt and destroy as much of the German presence as they could held the rapt attention of the 45 people gathered in the salle des fetes at Le Riols. No one was ready for the evening to end.

Mr. Cox is a man of passion, and his passion is to interview and record on film as many of the stories of the surviving Resistance fighters as he can. As they age, time is short adding urgency to his mission. You can read more about it here.

Everyone agreed that we'd love to hear Mr. Cox again. There are so many stories to hear and questions to ask about the war and Resistance activities right here in my backyard!


  1. Fascinating. I wish I'd known about the talk. You were some way from home at Le Riols. As you say, the number of people still alive who remember these things is dwindling.

  2. I thought I might see you there. I did see Ann from the writer's group. I subscribe to the TAGlines blog....that's where I saw the information Yes, Le Riols is about an hour and 15 minutes from home, but it was well-worth the trip. He may speak again: I'll let you know if I hear of anything.