"When I make a film, it is a sleep in which I am dreaming."

Jean Cocteau
July 5, 1889 — October 11, 1963

"My method is simple: not to aim at poetry. That must come of its own accord. The mere whispered mention of its name frightens it away. I shall try to build a table. It will be up to you then to eat at it, to examine it or to chop it up for firewood."Jean Cocteau

Testament of Orpheus // dir. Jean Cocteau


Jean Cocteau by Jane Bown. 1950.

Jean Cocteau by Jane Bown. 1950.

Jean CocteauFilm

"It is the unique power of cinema to allow a great many people to dream the same dream together and to present illusions to us as if it were strict reality. It is, in short, an admirable vehicle for poetry. My film is nothing other than a striptease act, gradually peeling away my body to reveal my naked soul."

Jean Cocteau (July 5, 1889 –- October 11, 1963)

Jean Cocteau and Ella Fitzgerald.

Jean Cocteau and Ella Fitzgerald.

Jean Cocteau, François Truffaut, and Claude Chabrol at the 1959 Cannes Film Festival.

Jean Cocteau, François Truffaut, and Claude Chabrol at the 1959 Cannes Film Festival.

Jean-Pierre Léaud, Madeleine and François Truffaut, and Jean Cocteau at the 1959 Cannes Film Festival. Truffaut won Best Director honors for The 400 Blows.

Jean-Pierre Léaud, Madeleine and François Truffaut, and Jean Cocteau at the 1959 Cannes Film Festival. Truffaut won Best Director honors for The 400 Blows.