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Title:DE GAULLE'S BIG PARADE DOWN THE CHAMPS ELYSÉES [Allocated Title]
Film Number:A70 136-3
Other titles:STREET-FIGHTING IN THE CENTRE OF PARIS [Allocated Title]
Summary: Two sequences showing Allied activities in liberated Paris, August 1944.
Description: Jeeps belonging to a British army film camera team drive up the Champs Elysées towards the Place d'Etoile and the Arc de Triomphe. There, three of the cameramen place floral tributes on the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior. Troops from the 2nd French Armoured Division chat to Parisiennes near the Place d'Etoile. Jubilant, banner-waving civilians and FFI ride in lorries along the Elysées prior to the big parade. Accompanied by his naval officer son, General de Gaulle places floral tributes on the Unknown Warrior's tomb and then marches down the Elysées at the head of a huge and motley procession consisting of Free French leaders and Resistance chiefs, police, FFI, 2nd French Armoured Division troops, and Allied journalists and press and newsreel cameramen. Thousands of waving, cheering civilians line the route. Casualties of the outbreak of shooting between snipers and the liberation forces are rushed away in improvised ambulances. Excited and puzzled crowds watch the fighting from the pavements.
Production Details: Directorate of Public Relations, War Office (Production sponsor)
Army Film and Photographic Unit (Production company)
Walter, Ernest Henry1919Family origin: Barry, Glamorgan, South Wales (Production individual)
Personalities, Units and Organisations: Gaulle, Charles André Joseph Marie de (person)
Free French Forces, Div, Armoured, French, 2 (regiment/service)
British Army, Army Film and Photographic Unit (regiment/service)
Forces Francaises de l'Interieur (regiment/service)
French Red Cross (regiment/service)
Keywords: armour, United States - tank: M5 Stuart V light tank (object name)
transport, United States military - light utility: jeep & [British] (object name)
celebrations, French - liberation: Paris (object name)
journalism and record, British - cameraman: AFPU (object name)
combat, French - irregular: streetfighting (object name)
buildings, French - monumental: Arc de Triomphe (object name)
buildings, French - monumental: tomb of the Unknown Warrior (object name)
society, Allied military - friendship: fraternisation (object name)
society, French - friendship: fraternisation (object name)
transport, 2/3 wheel: bicycle (object name)
medical, Allied military - movement: stretcher (object name)
casualties, French wounded (object name)
Arc de Triomphe, Paris, Département de Ville de Paris, France (geography)
Champs Elysées, Paris, Département de Ville de Paris, France (geography)
Notes: Note: See with A70 136-1, 2, 4 and 5, 137-1, 2, 3, 4 and 5, and 140-9 for footage taken during the liberation of Paris. As to the indiscriminate shooting that broke out on the day of the big parade nobody was able to provide exact proof that collaborators were responsible for sniping as those suspects who were seized did not survive to receive proper police interrogation.
Remarks: Excellent footage, in which the atmosphere of excitement and tension on the day of De Gaulle's big parade through the centre of Paris to Notre Dame is well conveyed.
Documentation/associated material: for a journalistic account of the events that led up to the liberation of Paris, read 'Is Paris Burning?' by Dominique Lapierre and Larry Collins and see 'Journal de la Resistance' for film footage taken by the FFI during the uprising that preceded the Allies' arrival.