WE DID IT !!!!!!

Let's start step 2: the maintenance for 12 years. The new goal is 43 000€.

As you know, the restoration will not be eternal. We need more money= 7000€.

A few examples:

  • the bust will need 2 layers of wax every 2 years
  • the grave will be cleaned up with soft techniques
  • we know that 3 iron posts will blew up the stones in a few years. It's inevitable. So we will have to fix the broken stones and set up the posts.

All with conservators and experts in art. It's expensive because the Père Lachaise is classified as historical monument

Help us and donate !!

The grave of Georges Méliès needs to be renovated. We think about his futur and his maintenance.

We need your help and support !

The Kickstarter campaign is between march, 26th and april, 23th 2019 (at noon in Europe and 10:00 UCT or 12:00 CEST.)

Restoration Georges Méliès’ grave at Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris.

We, descendants of Georges Méliès, are launching a crowdfunding to restore his grave as it was originally in 1938.
We need your help and support to restore the resting place of Georges Méliès in the most visited cemetery in the world: 3.5 million visitors each year.
Since 1938, the year Georges was buried, at 1954, the year his bust was installed, sculpted by Renato Carvillani, his grave has never restored. Little by little, the greyish green of the bust invaded the gravestone, the porous stone degraded, the iron posts blew up the stone and fell. The chains surrounding the tomb were stolen a long time ago.
We would like to highlight one of the only places where movie lovers can continue to visit him and show them their gratitude by placing letters and small gifts.


the steps of the restoration.

The Père Lachaise cemetery stretches over 43 hectares (439,300 m2). It counts nearly 70 00 concessions and more than 200 are considered as famous people: Molière, La Fontaine, Balzac, Apollinaire, Eluard, Oscar Wilde, Racine, Daudet, Chopin, Piaf, Jim Morrison, Henri Salvador, Bécaud, Moustaki, Michel Petrucciani, Maria Callas, ...

Restoration of graves, a private matter

The cemetery service manages 20 Parisian cemeteries, including the Père Lachaise cemetery, with 634 000 concessions. It has a budget for the restoration of monuments of the order of 40 000 to 50 000 € per year. The City of Paris is not obliged to preserve, restore, clean or repair the graves of cemeteries. This budget is therefore allocated to monuments and burials belonging to the City of Paris. According to French law, since funerary monuments are private property, it is legally the responsibility of the owners of these monuments to maintain, repair and restore them.

Père Lachaise, the constraints of a classified site

Part of the Père Lachaise cemetery is designated as a historical monument and Georges Méliès' grave, division 64, is not in this zone. However, in practice, in the case of renovation or works, burials and monuments belonging to private individuals follow the same administrative route as those in the classified zone.
The work of a private burial must:

  • to be reversible
  • have the approval of the ABF commission (Architectes des Bâtiments de France) before any intervention.
  • respond to the recommendations of the Conservatoire du Père Lachaise:
    • list of licensed art conservators (no question of taking a funeral parlor)
    • techniques used
    • tools
    • security
    • procedures and steps
    • annual calendar constraints.


the crowdfunding.

To restore his grave a crowdfunding has been launched between march, 26th and april, 23th 2019.

Rewards are available to help us to renovate the grave and here are a few examples:

To see the full list, please click on our Kickstarter page: here.


the story of Georges.

One of the greatest magician of his time
One of the greatest pioneer of cinema, father of the cinema and special effects

Georges Méliès was born in Paris on December 8, 1861 in a wealthy bourgeois family, third among 2 older brothers. Georges was destined, like his brothers, to take over the torch of the family shoes factory. But, very young, Georges is already curious, sensitive, imaginative, talented for drawing and especially rebel. At 18 years old, his final exam passes after eight years of boarding school at the Imperial lycée of Vanves and then at Lycée Louis le Grand, he wants to integrate the beaux-arts de Paris.
His father says him no... And everything follows …
He leaves for his military service in Blois, homeland of the Great magician Robert-Houdin (from whom Houdini took his name).
In 1884 he was sent to London to take him away from a romantic affair: he discovers the magic of the scene, another romantic affair whose father had not suspected the consequences.
  • Heir to Robert-Houdin

    In London, at the Egyptian Hall, he hangs out the greatest magicians of the time: Maskelyne, David Devant,...  He learns scene Magic with his great illusions, intricate tangle of double-bottomed traps and truncated perspectives. He has also many relationships in the art world.
    In 1885, he returns to Paris, married and performes as an illusionist.

    In 1888, his father retires.
    Georges leaves the shoe factory to his brothers and at 26 years old takes over the lease and the background of the Robert-Houdin theatre, which he will lead for more than 20 years.
    Thanks to his imagination, his drawing talents, his manual mechanical knowledge acquired at his father's factory, he creates and manufactures many illusions, often ending with the projection of photographic views.
    In 1891, he founded the Académie de Prestidigitation, which would become in 1904, the French trade union Chamber of Prestidigitation, to assist the Illusionists considered as entertainers.
    Between 1888 and 1895, Méliès keeps abreast of abundant news from the world of photography in France, Europe and the United States.

    When Antoine Lumière, in December 1895, father of Louis and Auguste, a photographer he knows well, invites him to a public representation of their invention (Lumière cinematograph) at the Grand Café, Méliès is ready: He has already in himself the knowledge and imagination to understand the great tool that he discovers that night. His personal fortune and his theatre will enable him to realize all his ideas.

  • The creator of the cinema and special effects
  • Facing the industry of cinema
  • His life after the cinema

who is behind this project.
The Georges Méliès project is hold by a part of the direct descendants of Georges Méliès. Georges had two children, a girl Georgette and thirteen years later, a boy Andre. We are the descendants of Andre: his grandson Pascal and his great grand daughter Pauline.
 
“Georges is the grand father of my grand mother. We talk to Georges as a mischievous and bubbly uncle we’ve never met. It’s not like he died 46 years before I was born. I feel very close to him, to his life, to his universe, to his way to think and create. I love him deeply.
I started to see his movies when I was a little girl. I don’t even remember the first time.
I’m the fourth generation in the family to promote and defend his work. It’s a very hard job.
For living, I’m a cultural advisor. This project is just the beginning, I want to do more for Georges. I want him to be part of the 21st century and more people around the world share his poetry, his freshness and his endless love for creation.”
 
Pauline, great great grand daughter of Georges Méliès.


they talk about us.

USA -  Vintage News - "Campaign to Save the Grave of the Man who Invented Special Effects for Film", Nikola Budanovic, march 13, 2019

BELGIUM - RTBF.be  "Un crowdfunding pour rénover la tombe du cinéaste Georges Méliès", Marion Jaumotte, 18 mars 2019

UK - The Guardian - "Dead famous: the Kickstarter campaign to restore Méliès's grave", Pamela Hutchinson, march 20, 2019

PORTUGAL - Observador - "Campa do histórico cineasta Georges Méliès vai ser restaurada por crowdfunding", Nuno Viegas, march 21, 2019

CANADA - La Presse - "Campagne de sociofinancement pour la sépulture de Georges Méliès", André Duchesne, 21 mars 2019

ITALY - Reppublica - "Salvate la tomba del mio bisnonno Georges Méliès. Ha inventato il cinema",  Giulia Echites, march 23, 2019

SWEDEN - SVT Nyheter - "Filmskaparen Georges Méliès grav rustas upp – med hjälp av kickstarterkampanj", Siri Hill, 20 mars 2019

BRAZIL - Nerdbunker - "Admiradores do lendário cineasta George Méliès vão se juntando para reparar seu tumulo", João Abbade, march 23, 2019

BRAZIL - Gauchazh - "Bisneta de Georges Méliès cria campanha para restaurar seu túmulo", march 27, 2019

UK - Silent London - "Silent Paris: you can help restore Georges Méliès’s grave", march 26, 2019

FRANCE - La Fonte d'art - "Souscription pour sauver la tombe de Georges Méliès au Père-Lachaise", 20 mars 2019

ITALIE - Orgoglio Nerd - "George Méliès: un crowdfunding per restaurare la tomba del regista", 5 april 2019

FRANCE - Ouest-France - "Il faut sauver la tombe de Georges Méliès", Michel Derrien, 10 avril 2019

SWEDEN - Moviezine - "Georges Méliès grav behöver din hjälp ", Robin Anderson, april 10th 2019

FRANCE - 20 minutes - "Paris: Ils veulent sauver la tombe d’un pionnier du cinéma au cimetière du Père Lachaise", Floréal Hernandez, 13 avril 2019

FRANCE - France Culture - Emission de radio Plan large "H comme Hal Hartley, l'insoumis", Antoine Guillot, 13 avril 2019

FRANCE - Sur la 2, media des étudiants Paris-Dauphine - " Le combat de la famille de Georges Méliès pour rénover sa tombe", Lucie Mouillaud, 12 avril 2019

FRANCE - Vivre Paris - "Père Lachaise : La tombe de George Méliès a besoin de vous", C.B, 15 avril 2019

FRANCE - Cotentin Webradio - "Sauvons la tombe de Georges Méliès pionnier du cinéma et inventeur des effets spéciaux", 17 avril 2019

FRANCE - Filmfestivals.com - "Il faut sauver la tombe de Georges Méliès au Père Lachaise...A votre bon coeur...", 16 avril 2019

ITALY - VIDEO - Civetta di Torino - "La tomba di Georges Méliès nel cimitero del Père-Lachaise",  9 avril 2019

FRANCE - Site sur la science-fiction & le fantastique - "Sauvons la tombe de Georges Méliès", 17 avril 2019

FRANCE - La Dépêche - "Un appel aux dons pour rénover la tombe de l'Ariégeois Georges Méliès", B.Baixeras, 18 avril 2019

FRANCE - La Croix - "Une semaine pour sauver la tombe de Georges Méliès", Boris Granger, 18 avril 2019

FRANCE - TV5monde infos - "Sauvons Georges Méliès, mon arrière arrière grand-père !", Frantz Vaillant, 19 avril 2019

FRANCE - BFMTV info - "Un projet Kickstarter pour restaurer la tombe de Méliès au Père-Lachaise", Magali Rangain, 18 avril 2019

FRANCE - Le Figaro - "Une souscription pour sauver la tombe de Georges Méliès au Père-Lachaise", 19 avril 2019

FRANCE - Le Parisien - "Paris - Montreuil : encore 3 000 € à trouver pour « sauver » la tombe de Georges Méliès", Benoit Hasse, 19 avril 2019


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