Christian Carion gets his revenge

In December 1914 groups of German, French, and British soldiers laid down their arms to celebrate Christmas together. The story of the Christmas Truce of 1914 is told in Christian Carion's film "Joyeux Noel."
Image courtesy Nord Oest Productions
Christian Carion
Director Christian Carion says he didn't believe the story of the Christmas Truce when he first heard it, but after extensive reseach he knew he had to make a film to tell the story to a bigger audience.
MPR Photo/Euan Kerr

During the first Christmas of World War One, a remarkable thing happened in the trenches stretching across Northern France. The troops facing each other across no-man's land set down their guns, climbed out of the trenches and joined with their enemies in celebrating the season.

The Christmas Truce is the subject of the Oscar-nominated film "Joyeux Noel," or "Merry Christmas." Director Christian Carion grew up in France and says he never heard the story, because it had been hushed up by the French authorities. They saw it as a case of mass insubordination.

Carion learned about the event through a historian who took him to archives in France, Britain, and Germany to see the evidence. Carion told Minnesota Public Radio's Euan Kerr he knew then he had to make a film.

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