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2009 Festival Feature Films (March 27-29)


French director Pierre Marcel presents the North American premiere of Tabarly

director Pierre Marcel screenplay Pierre Marcel producers Jacques Perrin, Nicolas Dumont starring Eric Tabarly as himself running time 1 h 30 min general audience

César Award

Congratulations to Pierre Marcel for his 2009 César nomination for Best Documentary for Tabarly.


We often dream of meeting those great men and women we admire — to listen to their stories and to get to know the spirit that drives them. But these figures do not just tell and retell their stories — they live them. Meeting Eric Tabarly catches you off-guard. A discret man full of humility yet what a presence he made; he was someone so down-to-earth. But I regret not having known him better; if I had known of his adventures and grand expeditions before, would I have understood the man?

Pierre Marcel’s film, sponsored by the Eric Tabarly Association, tells of the unusual journey of this in-tune-with-nature sailor. Based largely on original documents from radio broadcasts to other audiovisual archives, in English and French, from both professional and amateur sources, this work brings to light the many feats and accomplishments throughout 35 years that the Pen Duick fleet carried throughout 35 years out on the world’s seas.

Tabarly: the perfect composite of a human being, a boat and the sea. He was not a man of many words, but he led rather by his actions and example.

Pierre Marcel

2008 Tabarly

Jacques Perrin

selected films since 1991

2008 Faubourg 36
  Modern Love
2007 Héros fragiles
2004 Les Choristes
  Le Carnet rouge
2002 11”09’01 – September 11
  L’Empire au milieu du sud
2001 Le Peuple migrateur
1999 Himalaya – l’enfance d’un chef
  Plus fort que tout
1996 Microcosmos: Le Peuple de l’herbe
1995 Les Enfants de Lumière
1993 Wolf-Hunt
1992 Guelwaar
1991 Le Hors la vie

world-renowned sailor
Eric Tabarly

selected accomplishments since 1964

1998 Posthumously declared Commander in the Order of the Legion of Honor
  Disappearance aboard the Pen Duick en route to Scotland
1997 First, Transat
1987 Second, Transat Le Point Europe1
1984 Third, Transat alone
1980 Record set for solo transatlantic voyage: 10 d 5 h 14 m 20 s
1976 Declared Officer in the Legion of Honor
  First, Transat
1972 First, TransPac
1971 First, Falmouth-Gibraltar
  First, Middle Sea Race
1969 First, San Francisco-Tokyo
1967 First, Tour de Gotland
  First, Channel Race
  First, Fasnet
  First, Sydney-Hobart
1966 First, Oyster Bay Newport
1964 Knighted in the Order of the Legion of Honor
  Knighted in the Order of Maritime Merit

Testimony by Jacqueline Tabarly, president of the Eric Tabarly Association

I have often been asked for my approval for films depicting my husband or his life. I have never agreed to do so until now.

Pierre Marcel presented to me a project that was uniquely original. In effect, he proposed to recount Eric’s life and career through the film footage, interviews, photographs and other original archives on him.

TabarlyPierre did not know Eric. But he penetrated his character, bit by bit, by reading books, spending time in our house and taking out each boat of the Pen Duick fleet. He even skippered the original Pen Duick — the boat that has since become the emblem of the Eric Tabarly Association — for a period of three years.

It has now been 10 years since the death of the navigator. I rejoice in the fact that he still captivates young people who wish to preserve the memory of Eric Tabarly and his way of life, the way he thrived on sea racing.

I cannot thank Jacques Perrin enough for accompanying Pierre on the project. Knowing the quality of Jacques work, I knew that the subject matter would be treated with precision and simplicity. And I hoped, with good reason, that Jacques would sponsor this project in remembrance of the times when he and Eric would seek counsel from one another to find sponsors for their own projects.




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