An unnarrated compilation, produced by INA and France Televisions, chronicling American culture as seen on French television, ranging from World War II-era newsreels to 2002 footage of French President Jacques Chirac and U.S. President George W. Bush. The black-and-white and color footage is in both English and French with English subtitles.

The program begins with American diva Jessye Norman singing "La Marseillaise" at a Bastille Day celebration in Paris on July 14, 1989; the camera cuts to an image of then-President George Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush in the crowd. An introductory series of clips presents a range of footage, beginning with the first-ever live U.S. broadcast on French television, through the Telestar satellite, on July 23, 1962. Host Joseph Pasteur explains to the television audience what they are about to see, after which the camera shifts to a split screen: on the left half is the Statue of Liberty; on the right, the Eiffel Tower; then images of New York and San Francisco are shown. The last segment of the introduction is a series of newsreel clips of Americans, the primary mode by which Europeans watched the United States before the advent of Telestar, which includes footage of the following: Josephine Baker; Parisians congratulating U.S. soldiers in 1945; a rodeo; an Elvis Presley press conference in 1959; Grace Kelly in Monaco in 1956; and President John F. Kennedy sending a French greeting from Hyannisport in 1960 along with some short clips of Jacqueline Kennedy and daughter Caroline.

The rest of the compilation is divided into several parts, introduced by on-screen titles. The first part, entitled "American Dreams," illustrates French interest in American achievement and culture, and includes the following clips: French singer Jo Dassin talking about his grandfather emigrating to America; Francois de Closets discussing the Apollo rocket in July 1969; a 1979 interview with Neil Armstrong; and Dassin singing "L'Amerique (America)" in 1976 to a backdrop of images of the United States.

The next segment, "Americans," presents man-on-the-street interviews with ordinary Americans, and includes the following clips: Manhattanites talking about what they love about America in 1972; an Oklahoma woman discussing the country and the war in 1968; and a white Little Rock, Arkansas couple talking about integration in 1971.

The segment entitled "French Pop Star Claude Francois Celebrates Columbus," follows, showing a 1967 video of Francois singing a song about Columbus in English.

Then, "American Legends on French Screens" presents images of American celebrities, includes the following: Ernest Hemingway at his home in Finca Vigia, Cuba; Orson Welles talking in Paris in 1982 about Ronald and Nancy Reagan, Warren Beatty, and Diane Keaton; Woody Allen on "Bouillon de Culture" in 1995 talking about his dislikes and likes; Liza Minnelli singing in French at the Olympia in Paris in 1969; John Ford talking in 1966 about becoming a director; Miles Davis playing "Elevator to the Gallows" in 1957 in Paris; Sydney Poitier in 1961 in Cannes talking about being a black star; Ella Fitzgerald singing at Juan les Pins in 1964; Louis Armstrong singing in Paris in 1965, followed by a interview with him; author Charles Bukowski speaking about his feelings on women in an interview with Marco Ferrier in Los Angeles in 1982; Andy Warhol talking about being interviewed; and Marilyn Monroe, in various clips.

The next segment, "Mr. President" presents images of every U.S. president since 1960 with French leaders and in France, including the following: Kennedy in Paris in 1961; Lyndon B. Johnson in Washington in 1963; Richard Nixon in Paris Orly in 1969; Gerarld Ford in the French West Indies in 1975; Jimmy Carter at Omaha Beach in 1978; Reagan in New York in 1987; George H.W. Bush in 1990 in Kennebunkport; Bill Clinton in Paris in 1994; and George W. Bush with Jacques Chirac in 2002; then, "French Chiefs Addressing US" presents images of French heads-of-state in the United States: Charles de Gaulle speaking to a crowd in New York in 1945; Francois Mitterand speaking in San Francisco in 1984; Jacques Chirac in Paris in 1986; and Chirac and Rudy Giuliani in a helicopter over Ground Zero on September 20, 2001.

The next part, entitled "New York, New York," presents images of New York and New Yorkers, including the following: December 31, 2001 at Times Square; Times Square in 1962; firemen fighting a fire in 1962; and a FDNY fire truck and cadets from West Point in a parade down the Champs-Elysees on July 14, 2002.

The next segment, entitled "US Popstars," presents images of American musicians and groups: James Brown in 1980 doing a series of dances, followed by an interview in which Brown discusses his not having an education; the Jackson Five performing in 1973; the Velvet Underground performing in Paris in 1972; and the Beach Boys singing "Barbara Ann" in Paris in 1969.

The next part, etitled "Legends of Sport," presents images of American athletes: Carl Lewis being interviewed after winning a gold medal at the Summer Games in Atlanta in 1996; Cassius Clay being filmed by William Klein; Lance Armstrong discussing his cancer; Chris Evert practicing in Paris in 1974 and discussing her winning strategy; a montage of U.S. winners at the French Open in Paris, including Evert in 1983 and 1986, Michael Chang in 1989, Jim Courier in 1991, and Andre Agassi in 1999; Lewis watching the American flag being raised at a medal ceremony; Greg LeMond accepting the trophy at the 1986 Tour de France and Lance Armstrong in 2001.

The following segent, entitled "French Celebs in the US," presents video and photo images of French celebrities: Line Renaud in Las Vegas in 1964; French Minister of Culture AndrŽ Malraux on the occasion of the historical loaning of the Mona Lisa to the United States for exhibition (1963); and a montage of noted celebs including actors Maurice Chevalier, Yves Montand, and Simone Signoret, French designer Coco Chanel, actress Brigitte Bardot, oceanographer and documentarian Jacques Cousteau, singer/songwriter Charles Aznavour, and basketball player Tony Parker. Then, "US Celebs in France," presents clips of American celebrities: Duke Ellington in Paris in 1962; Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. in Paris in 1949, and Humphrey Bogart with his wife Lauren Bacall in Paris in 1951; remarks by President Kennedy in Paris in 1961; an interview with Bill Gates in Paris in 1995; the opening of Euro Disney in 1992; an interview with Jane Fonda on the French Riviera in 1963 discussing her father's response to her entering acting; a brief clip with Jayne Mansfield; and an interview with Arnold Schwarzenegger in 1986.

The next part, entitled "At Cannes Festival," presents a series of images of actors and other celebrities at the Cannes Film Festival over the years, including the following, among others: Gregory Peck; Cary Grant; Elizabeth Taylor; Charlie Chaplin (in 1971); Clint Eastwood; and Paul Newman.

The final part, "French American Kisses," concludes the compilation with various clips of American celebrities giving or receiving kisses: Jodie Foster, who exchanges a peck with Claude Francois as they sing together in 1967; Madonna and Jacques Chirac; and Jerry Lewis, Kirk Douglas, and Sharon Stone, in various clips.

(This program is in English; French portions are subtitled in English.)

Cataloging of this program was made possible by France Televisions, 2004.


  • NETWORK: (France)
  • DATE: February 2, 2004
  • RUNNING TIME: 0:45:56
  • COLOR/B&W: Color
  • CATALOG ID: T:80138
  • GENRE: Variety
  • SUBJECT HEADING: International Collection - France


    • Martin Even … Producer
    • Yvan Emelilandre … Production (Misc.), Editor
    • Arnaud Fazilleau … Researcher
    • Catherine Lhermitte … Researcher
    • Andre Agassi
    • Woody Allen
    • Lance Armstrong
    • Louis Armstrong
    • Neil Armstrong
    • Charles Aznavour
    • Lauren Bacall
    • Josephine Baker
    • Brigitte Bardot
    • Beach Boys, The
    • Warren Beatty
    • Humphrey Bogart
    • James Brown
    • Barbara Bush
    • George Bush
    • George W. Bush
    • Charles Bukowski
    • Jimmy Carter
    • Coco Chanel
    • Michael Chang
    • Charlie Chaplin
    • Maurice Chevalier
    • Jacques Chirac
    • Clay, Cassius (See also: Muhammad Ali)
    • Bill Clinton
    • Jim Courier
    • Jacques Cousteau
    • Jo Dassin
    • Miles Davis
    • De Closets, Francois
    • De Gaulle, Charles
    • Kirk Douglas
    • Clint Eastwood
    • Duke Ellington
    • Chris Evert
    • Douglas Fairbanks
    • Marco Ferrier
    • Ella Fitzgerald
    • Jane Fonda
    • Gerald Ford
    • John Ford
    • Jodie Foster
    • Claude Francois
    • Bill Gates
    • Rudy Giuliani
    • Cary Grant
    • Ernest Hemingway
    • Jackson Five, The
    • Lyndon B. Johnson
    • Diane Keaton
    • Grace Kelly
    • Caroline Kennedy
    • Jacqueline Kennedy
    • John F. Kennedy
    • William Klein
    • Greg LeMond
    • Carl Lewis
    • Jerry Lewis
    • Madonna
    • Andre Malraux
    • Jayne Mansfield
    • Liza Minnelli
    • Francois Mitterand
    • Marilyn Monroe
    • Yves Montand
    • Paul Newman
    • Richard Nixon
    • Jessye Norman
    • Tony Parker
    • Joseph Pasteur
    • Gregory Peck
    • Sydney Poitier
    • Elvis Presley
    • Nancy Reagan
    • Ronald Reagan
    • Line Renaud
    • Arnold Schwarzenegger
    • Simone Signoret
    • Sharon Stone
    • Elizabeth Taylor
    • Velvet Underground, The
    • Andy Warhol
    • Orson Welles