Documentary about French photographer and artist André Villers best known for his portraits of Pablo Picasso. But he's done more than that!!


The project


I met ANDRE VILLERS for the first time when I was 7 years old. It was at that time that he took this photograph of my family.




My father had met André in France in 1968 and in 1969 he organized André's first exhibition outside of France: in Prague, the capital of then communist Czechoslovakia.


But André's story goes way back in history...


In 1946, 16-year old André Villers was dying when he was transferred to the medical center in Vallauris in the south of France right after World War 2 ended.


He was suffering from bone tuberculosis and doctors didn't give him much hope.

He was in a full body cast for nearly 5 years!!!




He could hardly move at all, lying in bed all day and listening to jazz music.

It was thanks to the newly introduced penicillin that he slowly recovered and eventually was able to walk again.


And to discover life again...


He took on photography lessons and soon, photography became his passion, alongside jazz.


When André was 23, he was walking around the town of Vallauris, taking pictures. He took a photograph of an older man. The next day, André developed the photo and took it back to show it to the man. The man shook his head and said, "I like it. You're talented, kid. Now come with me, I'll show you what I do."

And the man took André to his workshop where there were paintings, sculptures and ceramic objects all around. Young André was mesmerized. This man was Pablo Picasso!


After that first encounter, Picasso allowed André to come to his workshop and take photos anytime he wanted. That was the beginning of a new friendship.








Through Picasso, André was introduced to painters such as Chagall, Dali, Fernand Léger, Hartung or  Magnelli, filmmakers Bunuel and Fellini, poet and writer Jacques Prévert, singer Leo Ferré, architect Le Corbusier and many others...


He has photographed them all and has never boasted about it. Throughout his life, André kept a low profile, even though his photographs are known worldwide.


Together with Picasso and Prévert, they did a collective work made of Picasso's and André's photocollages accompanied by poetic texts by Prévert. The album was called DIURNES and it was published in 1962.


At that time, André also met and became friends with fellow photographers Henri Cartier-Bresson, Brassai, Robert Doisneau and David Douglas Duncan.


Nowadays, André still takes photographs and develops them himself but for many years, he has been experimenting with different photographic and other visual art forms, doing cut-outs and collages of all shapes and sizes, and playing with photographic emulsion and revealer in his lab.








He always knows how to put a touch of humor in his works!





His play with light and shadows has been a constant experimentation in his work over the years, and even now, at 82 years old.




André Villers is a fully-fledged artist. And this is his story.



A documentary film produced and directed by Marketa Tomanova.

Why fund it?

*** Best things in life are free, but it costs money to make a good movie! ***


As of August 1st, 2013, we have shot all material we need for our film.

My company Procope Films and my producing partner Martin Matiasek have invested a total of 32 500 € which went to the camera equipment + lenses + tripods + accessories, sound equipment + accessories, crew, traveling costs, accommodation costs, copyrights, archive research etc.


4 years in the making!


It took us 4 years from August 2009 to July 2013, whenever there were artistic and financing opportunities to shoot!

(Sure, you can always shoot more, but you have to learn to put a deadline to things!

Especially in documentary filmmaking ;-)


So now, our main concern is post-production.





1800 € will help us pay a great EDITOR, and when I say great, I mean the very talented Aurelien Manya, whose recent work include editing a documentary about the set of Jim Jarmusch's latest film Only Lovers Left Alive with Tilda Swinton et Tom Hiddleston.

This is not his regular price and he is giving us a huge discount!!



1000 will help us to rent the perfect EDITING ROOM in a professional post production facility!



1200 will help us to pay for the MUSIC for the soundtrack!!

We have found an absolutely fantastic eclectic multicultural latin jazz band SAKRA BURAJA and they are very thrilled to be participating in our project! They will compose original music and record it for us!!





1800 € will allow us to pay for the SOUND EDITING & SOUND MIX done by the amazing Academy Award® Nominated Petr Forejt -- provided he has time for us! ;-)

Petr has mixed the sound of such blockbusters as Chronicles of Narnia, Wanted, The Ilusionist or Van Helsing!

Procope Films has already worked with Petr in the past on the short film Le Diner.

Again, this is also not his regular rate and he would also give us a huge discount!!




1200 will allow us to make subtitles for foreign versions (the film is in french), a DCP + DVD copies and to pay for entry submissions to FILM FESTIVALS ALL AROUND THE WORLD!!!



Marketa Tomanova is a film director and a photographer. She studied filmmaking at St. Denis University in Paris and at FAMU Film School in Prague. She always knew she wanted to make films! Her film masters are Milos Forman, Andrei Tarkovski and Martin Scorsese. She is currently based in Paris and works around the world. Her passion is to tell... See more

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Pour André Villers, un des "metteurs en images" du grand Léo.
Enjoy the ride!
Hodne stesi, Marketo!