From the 13th to the 17th of November 2012, inhabitants of Sarlat and its surrounding villages have been celebrating all things cinema during the 21st edition of the Sarlat Film Festival.
As part of the festivities, the Sarlat Office de Tourisme organised a special guided tour that focused on the city’s appearances in film and television productions. In the cold and overcast afternoon of Saturday the 17th of November, a group of approximately 20-30 people joined expert guide Corinne Hommel for the tour. Corinne is easily one of the best guides and story tellers I have ever followed. Her regular guided tour of the city is excellent (also organised by the Office de Tourisme) and her knowledge of the history of Sarlat is second to none. Fortunately for us, her knowledge of the city’s appearance in film and television is also pretty comprehensive.
The city’s appeal to directors is thanks to its historical features such as narrow streets and alleyways, timber frame buildings with stone roofs, wooden window frames and shutters, traditional gas lanterns, cobbled streets and stone floored courtyards. All of which have been perfectly preserved or faithfully restored throughout the 20th century. It is therefore unsurprising that the films and series produced here have mostly been period pieces such as ‘The Duellists’ by Ridley Scott (1977), ‘Ever After : A Cinderella Story’ by Andy Tennant (1998) starring Drew Barrymore and ‘La Fille de d’Artagnan’ by Bertrand Tavernier (1994) starring Sophie Marceau.
A full list of films featuring Sarlat can be found here.