Most certainly, Pagnol's methods are like no other. Not only is he his own scriptwriter, dialogue writer and director, working for his own company and on his own land, but the films he shoots are also pure works, as handcrafted objects shaped by his hands, with his comrades. Marcel Pagnol here crafts a rake and there moves the miller's table... There is no hierarchy in this world, no separate skills; work is a joint venture... Pierre LeprohonJournalist, on the shoot of Manon des Sources ("Manon of the Spring").
We would start shooting when Pagnol felt like starting or when all bowls games had been satisfactorily settled. And we worked all the same.Pierre FresnayActor
In France, a brilliant author had succeeded in creating a perfectly efficient organization to broadcast his films. He was Marcel Pagnol. Not only did he restrict his work on a geographical level, as Bergman did, but also on a historical level.Jean RenoirFilm director
It is almost noon. Cicadas are crackling in the dry air. We start looking forward to pastis time. This is how people make films in Provence. You need to know all this to understand what gives life to Pagnol's films. Not only does the genuineness of his films ring true, but so does this very fellow feeling, this communion.Pierre LeprohonJournalist, on the shoot of Manon des Sources ("Manon of the Spring")
The text, outwardly so easy and smooth, is actually so rigorously, soundly and logically written that you learn it almost automatically and that nothing more is to be added.Robert VattierActor
This is what Pagnol taught us: after watching one of his films, you felt happy. Sometimes you even believed you were a better person.Jean-Charles TacchellaFilm director
We would shoot Le Schpountz in the afternoon and Regain ("Harvest") in the morning as landscape and actors were the same in both films. That took some doing, playing two characters in one day. I would never have agreed to do that with anyone else but Pagnol.FernandelActor
I remember the shoot of César, third part of the trilogy, in a very different way. Pagnol had turned the corner: he was the one in charge. His outstanding subsequent success in filmmaking and the skills he immediately acquired in all his branches are well known.Pierre FresnayActor
He has just turned sixty and looks like he is barely forty years old. He is a medium-sized man, rather strong, glowing with health, true health, that which naturally exists without exercise. Sometimes, on Thursdays, he will put his green outfit on and grab his cocked hat, but most of the time he does not even have a tie on and wears a sailor or bowls player's sweater.Bernard de FalloisPostface to "Le temps des amours" ("The Time of Love")
Marcel is the heart of this microcosm, which is actually very large for its significance. Let us make no mistake. French cinema exists thanks to the people who still work independently, who are not subject to trusts.Jean RenoirFilm director
Whatever you do, never work with a view to achieving the masterpiece: this is the best road to failure... Your misfortune is that you are too much of a scholar... When you feel like writing, do write: the readers will tell you what you are worth...Vincent Scotto à Marcel PagnolComposer of his film soundtracks and of hundreds of successful songs in interwar years.
"Jofroi", the first neorealist film.Vittorio de SicaFilm director
Pagnol's cinema, sincere and genuine, later acknowledged as "the purest ever", has given its first fruits with Jofroi and achieved, for the first time, the masterpiece with Angèle.Raymond CastansWriter
Texts by the son of the schoolmaster from Marseille are now used for dictation exercises, and extracts from La gloire de mon père ("My Father's Glory") are prominent in French grammar books. No victory is nobler for compulsory and secular education than such a round-trip from the local primary school to the Académie and from the Académie back to primary school.Pierre TcherniaJournalist and film director.
You're asking me if it is difficult to be both the filmmaker's wife and his performer. It is, indeed. Marcel is more demanding with his wife than with any other actor or actress.Jacqueline PagnolMarcel Pagnol's wife
One of the most amazing sides to Marcel Pagnol is that, very often, talented people are not very pleasant to keep company with, as if their talent was some sort of prickly armor. He was just the opposite. He was extremely kind and I found this side of his personality particularly touching. It could be described in vernacular words: he would say just like you. He would agree and encourage you, probably thinking, in his great wisdom, that you would soon realize by yourself that it was unachievable.Jean DutourdFrom the Académie Française, writer
Marcel is like the sun: when he enters a room, he lights it up.Joseph PagnolMarcel Pagnol's father.
Pagnol would spend hours in the sound truck. He was mainly interested in hearing the text uttered during the shoot, listening to see if the actors were speaking true, feeling the impact of a cue. So, I was on set and would say: "Action! Cut!" And, as soon as the shot was done, he would come out of the truck to correct the actors' performing.Suzanne de TroyeMarcel Pagnol and Jean Renoir's film editor.
The most vivid memory I retain of him is Pagnol wearing old trousers, a pair of espadrilles, his shirt open, having fun with his collaborators and electricians, playing bowls, extraordinarily cheerful and fruitfully talkative, and still directing everybody in a remarkable manner. Robert VattierActor
Marcel is more demanding with his wife than with any other actor or actress. When we were making Manon, sometimes he would get me out of bed at five in the morning to make some retakes!Jacqueline PagnolMarcel Pagnol's wife