Jacques Tati in the Ultra-Modern House

As the distinguished guests queued to meet the French president, André Malraux breezed past the line, pushing the actor-director and his wife forward. “May I introduce Mon Oncle, Monsieur le Président,” the Minister for Culture announced, a twinkle in his eye. Reaching out to shake hands, de Gaulle addressed the visitor with grave politeness: “Allow me to congratulate you, Monsieur Tati, on having such a brilliant nephew.” Those who overheard the gaffe momentarily froze. Having won the Oscar for Best Foreign Film with his latest work, Jacques Tati was the toast of Paris, hence his invitation to the state reception.…

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