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Les Français se passionnent-ils vraiment pour le mariage princier ?
If you have been to France recently, or glanced at a French newspaper, It won't have escaped your notice that royal wedding fever has hit France. Indeed, as the 29th April fast approaches, William and Kate are grabbing headlines in across the Channel too, and we're not just talking the little papers, but big'uns like Le Figaro and Le Monde. And if this wasn't enough, 3 out of the 5 main French TV channels will be offering live and uninterrupted coverage of the wedding, with additional documentaries about the William and Kate saga. Some are claiming France is even more obsessed than England itself. "Surely not!" I hear you say, but is it possible that are Gallic neighbours are experiencing a bit of pre-French rev nostalgia? Or is it simply a total fabrication by the media (as always) to make the most of this event and boost their audience ratings?
Franceinlondon does not expect to give any categoric answers to these questions. But we have decided to conduct a bit of our own research on the matter, and gone out amongst the people to ask the French in London (from a variety of backgrounds, religious and social denominations- we do these things properly, don't you know!) about their alleged "royal fever". The least one can say is that the conclusions could not be more ambivalent....
Will you be watching the royal wedding on French TV ?
Pierrick, France : 'I won't watch it on TV, because I will be working on the 29th – not everyone can enjoy a bank holiday - and it is not really the type of TV program I am used to watching. However, I find it is really interesting to see how England perpetuates the royal tradition through this wedding. They are loyal to some values, and that cannot hurt !'.
Coralie, France : 'Definitely I won't miss the wedding broadcast. First, because this kind of princess story makes me dream so to speak. And also because I want to know what type of wedding jewellery Kate Middleton may be wearing. It will inspire me for my next expenses....'.
Estelle, France : 'Being passionate about weddings is quite rare in France – you may look a bit 'weird', if not fuddy-duddy, so I won't watch it on TV. But I am sure I will read articles about the newly-weds in tabloids on the beach this summer.'
You are living in London. What are your plans on the 29th April ?
Maddie, London : 'I will pass by Westminster Abbey, to have a look at the crowd and the bridal party, even if the streets will be overcrowded. It is always good to feel the atmosphere'.
Agathe, London : 'I am so interested in the royal wedding I am going back to France for the whole weekend'.
The marriage will cost the economy £5bn and the government – through taxpayers - will have to pay £9,74 million for the ceremony's security and decorations. Do you find this shocking given the current economic climate?
Martin, France : If the government had not introduced a belt-tightening austerity plan, then it would have been fine. But I guess all the unemployed will be really upset with all these expenses for the wedding. It is quite unacceptable.
Jolan, France : 'You can't put a price on love! And it seems to me that British people really love the royal family. But as a Frenchman, I guess we were right to make our Revolution in 1789'.
Alexandre, France : 'Security and decorations : £9,74million. A happy and long-lasting royal wedding : priceless. There are some things money can't buy. For everything else, there's taxes.'
According to a ComRes/Sunday Mirror survey published on the 17th April, 48 per cent of those quizzed will watch “some or all” of the royal wedding live on television. Can France do even better ? Amid the two billion people around the world expected to watch the wedding on TV (it seems set to thrash Diana and Charle's wedding record of 750 million in 1981), how many French fanatics will be watching the ceremony ? Lets start taking bets !
On a more general note....your messages for William and Kate
Hager, Julia and Nora : Dear Kate and Will. You're both gorgeous and sweet. The people of Tunisia is busy building a happier and more democratic future but soon all is settled they hope to see you there hand in hand happy under the sun of their hopes and dreams. We wish you serenity and happiness
Erwan : Get married quickly, and let's drop it !
Ronan : Long live to the newly-weds !
Etienne : Don't they realize they are putting the Syrian heroes in the shade ? In the meantime, Obama is accused of being Muslim, Japan is still crying, and Libya is ruled by terror. It's odd to think two billion people are going to watch this ridiculous wedding. What a disreputable world.
Odile : Best wishes for this couple. Kate and William are really made for each other. Lots of love !
And the last, but definitely not the least...
Antonin : Kate, you're hot.
Thanks to all of you.