Jean de Baroncelli

Jean de Baroncelli (25 March 1914 - 31 July 1998) was a French writer.[1] Having achieved some success as a novelist, in 1953 he became a film critic, contributing regularly for Le Monde till 1983.[2][3]

Jean de Baroncelli
Marie Joseph Henri Jean de Baroncelli

25 March 1914
Died31 July 1998
Cinema critic
Spouse(s)Sophie Desmarets
Parent(s)Jacques de Baroncelli
Marguerite de Mont de Banque


Marie Joseph Henri Jean de Baroncelli was born in Paris a few months before the outbreak of the First World War. On his father's death he would become the tenth Marquis of Baroncelli,[1] although the title was little mentioned. His father was the pioneering film director, Jacques de Baroncelli and the family was based in southern France. More remotely the family, which had grown prosperous through commerce during the nineteenth century, traced their origins back to Tuscany.[1]

De Baroncelli studied Law and Humanities, emerging with a degree from the prestigious Institut d'études politiques de Paris (Sciences Po). During the 1940s he had several novels published including the wartime novel "Vingt-six hommes" (1942 - "Twenty-six men"),[4][5] and "Le disgracié" (1946)[6] He married the theatre star Sophie Desmarets in October 1950 and the couple moved into an old farm that he had inherited on the northwestern side of Montpellier where for several years during the summers they followed a celebrity life-style, with frequent parties. However, unseasonal frost in 1956 ruined the wine harvest that year and much of the farmland had to be sold. Further land sales followed, and most of the 300 hectares had been sold and developed for housing by the later 1960s.[3] Meanwhile, the couple's daughter was born in 1952.[1]

From 1953 till 1983 he contributed regularly to Le Monde, supplying numerous film reviews along with interviews and investigative pieces. He served on several film festival juries (Berlin 1957, Cannes 1958 and 1963, and Venice 1961). At one stage he was a member of the organising committee for the Cannes Film Festival. He has also featured several times on French radio the arts and review programme "Le Masque et la Plume". He was an early contributor to Libération, originally a resistance newspaper, and was a founding member of Association française des cinémas d'art et d'essai (Confederation of Arts Cinemas).


  1. ^ a b c d "Maître, fils, époux, père, veuf". Marquis Folco de Baroncelli (biography). 23 April 2008. Retrieved 18 February 2016.
  2. ^ "Jean de Baroncelli". biographie & informations. Babelio. Retrieved 18 February 2016.
  3. ^ a b Olivier Rioux (4 March 2015). "La Mosson a 50 ans : il était une fois La Paillade". Société anonyme des gazettes associées, SA (Gazette de Montpellier). Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 18 February 2016.
  4. ^ Raymond-Raoul Lambert (in French); Isabel Best (Translation to English) (1985). Diary of a witness 1940-1943: The experience of French Jews in The Holocaust. Librairie A. Fayard. p. 50. ISBN 978-1-56663-740-4.
  5. ^ Jean de Baroncelli (1942). Vingt-six hommes. Grasset.
  6. ^ Jean de Baroncelli (1946). Le disgracié. La Jeune Parque.