In 1926, the company Rapid Films, run by Bernard Natan, set up shop on 6 rue Francoeur, on the site of the Grand Bazar du Bâtiment, built at the end of the 19th century. Rapid Films renovated the premises of the department store to install a film processing lab which was followed by advertising film studios and, from 1927, film studios.
In 1929, Natan’s company merged with Pathé.
Bernard Natan was appointed Chairman of the Pathé film company, a position he held until the mid 1930s. The studios on rue Francoeur were in operation until the mid 1990s.
Several hundred films were produced at the Francoeur studios, including some major French cinema classics. The last film shot there was L’Amant by Jean-Jacques Annaud in 1992.
In 1999, La Fémis moved to the former Pathé studios, renovated by the architect Yves Lion on behalf of the City of Paris.
Here are some of the highlights of the films shot either fully or in part at the Francoeur studios:
Le Joueur d’échec by Raymond Bernard
Casanova by Alexandre Volkoff
Education de Prince by Henri Diamant-Berger
Mon Cœur au Ralenti by Marco de Gastyne
La Madonne des Sleepings by Maurice Gleize
La Sirène des Tropiques by Henri Etievant and Mario Nalpas
Sous le Ciel d’Orient by Fred Leroy-Granville and H.C. Gratham-Hayes
Capitaine Fracasse by Alberto Cavalcanti
L’Aigle de la Sierra by Louis de Carbonnat
Vivre by Robert Boudrioz
La merveilleuse Vie de Jeanne d’Arc by Marco de Gastyne
Conte Cruel by Gaston Modot
Le Collier de la Reine by Gaston Ravel
Le Mystère de la Chambre Jaune and Le Parfum de la Dame en Noir by Marcel L’Herbier
La Petite Lise by Jean Grémillon
L’Aiglon by Victor Tourjanski
Cœur de Lilas by Anatole Litvak
Les Galeries Lévy et Cie by André Huson
Un Soir au Front by Alexandre Ryder
Adieu Léonard by Pierre Prévert
Je Suis Avec Toi by Henri Decoin
Tornavara by Jean Dréville
Les Dames du Bois de Boulogne by Robert Bresson
Les Enfants du Paradis by Marcel Carné
Falbalas by Jacques Becker
La Fille du Diable by Henri Decoin
Les Portes de la Nuit by Marcel Carné
Clochemerle by Pierre Chenal
Rendez-vous de Juillet by Jacques Becker
Jean de la Lune by Marcel Achard
Le Paradis des Pilotes Perdus by Georges Lampin
Les Parents Terribles by Jean Cocteau
Aux Deux Colombes by Sacha Guitry
French Cancan by Jean Renoir
Le Rouge et le Noir by Claude Autant-Lara
Casino de Paris by André Hunebelle
Les Misérables by Jean-Paul Le Chanois
For further information about “Studios Francoeur” when they were named “Studios Pathé”, please visit the website of the Fondation Jérôme Seydoux - Pathé.