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Clair, René

Entry updated 22 April 2021. Tagged: Author, Film.

Pseudonym of French filmmaker and author René-Lucien Chomette (1898-1981) whose first feature film, Paris qui Dort (1924), is of sf interest; though many of his subsequent movies, in France, the UK and America, were of fantasy interest, their immersion in the coils of Fantastika defaulted to the unargued and the oneiric. A partial exception is It Happened Tomorrow (1944), based on Lord Dunsany's possibly unperformed Radio play The Jest of Hahalaba (January 1927 Atlantic Monthly; 1928 chap), though the Precognitions that shape its plot are conveyed by a ghost. Other films of some interest include Le Voyage imaginaire ["The Imaginary Voyage"] (1926), À nous la liberté ["Freedom for Us"] (1931), The Ghost Goes West (1926), I Married a Witch (1942) and La Beauté du diable ["Beauty and the Devil"] (1950).

In Clair's only full-length novel, Adams (1926; trans John Marks as Star Turn: A Novel of the Films 1936), a Hollywood actor (see California) finds himself literally becoming the characters he plays (see Identity Transfer), and decides therefore to mount a play in which he takes the role of God. [JC]

René-Lucien Chomette

born Paris: 11 November 1898

died Neuilly-sur-Seine, Hauts-de-Seine, Î-de-France: 15 March 1982

works (highly selected)


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