Le Mans - the opening sequence

Driving a Porsche 911 in France, 40 years ago...STARTING AROUND THE VILLAGE OF BRULON...

Credit: Marie Fotini...  

View this video before scrolling down "the opening sequence" page...


Summary of the car journey (10 locations in chronological order):
- location            1: bridge (crosses the La Vegre between Brulon and Cheville))
-     “               2: trees road (located near the canal in Fillé by people from Fillé, not visible on Street View)
-     “               3: restaurant (in Fillé)
-      “              4: church (in Fillé)
-      “              5: enters Place des Jacobins (Le Mans)
-      “              6: facing the cathedral of Le Mans
-      “              7: statue Place des Jacobins, Le Mans
-      “              8: junction Ruaudin road (en route to Maison Blanche & circuit)
-      “              9: passing Maison Blanche (MARTINI)
-      “             10: stops the car across MARTINI house

Location 1 - The 'bridge' road is located between Brulon and Cheville...  












From the angles - the clump of trees straight ahead in the distance are at the junction of the D4 (Route de Sable) and the D35, and appear to have been thinned out as per much else of the vegetation...


(New bridge dated 2013...)

Footnote A: Location 1 was finally located on the 14.10.17 by Michel from Le Mans...

Michel wrote:

"Laval - D357 - Coulans sur Gee - Longnes / Chassille - Joue en Charnie

Plus loin le carre four de "la lune" il faut tourner a gauche en direction de Brulon - D4

vous traversez la ville de Brulon

vous quittez un peu la ville de Brulon... puis sur la gauche il faut prendre direction Cheville

Vous roulez sur la D35 - et plus loin vous allez tombez sur ce fameux petit pont. La riviere qui coule en dessous

du pont s'appelle: La Vegre

C'est le tout debut du film "Le Mans"


Footnote: B On the 15th & 16th October 2017, John's informative emails unexpectively arrived...

"Dear Sir...
I was looking at your website relating to "Le Mans" and was gratified to see that the scenes in Fille had been identified ( I have been longing to know where these scenes were filmed for 47 years!!!).
However, you had not identified the very opening scene (the Bridge Road).
I believe I have found it.
It is on the D35 between Boulon and Cheville, where it crosses the "La Vigre" river.
The vegetation and other minor details have changed (what doesn't after 47 years?) but the road layout seems the same and the building cluster seems in the same place, as does the bridge which crosses the river over an island (discernible in the original movie.)
On google maps the nearest landmark is the "flour Mill Blin Bernard" which is out-of-shot in the movie but the road  to it is just visible  in the bottom right-hand frames as the Porsche crosses the bridge, etc. 
I hope this gives you something to investigate further.
Please reply if any queries.
John" (15.10.17)

 "I too am in England (SE London) and was just browsing through websites  under the "film locations".....
Your website was very useful  in my search for the first scene; you mentioned where the film crew were staying during the shoot, so I reasoned that they would not want to be too far away from their hotel for what is obviously an early-morning shoot.So I got Google maps and started looking for a road over a small river....the road having distinctive figures before and after the bridge.

An hour looking at maps and ..Voila!
John" (16.10.17)


Location 2 - Trees road...

In a blog from people living in the area of Fille, discussion about images of Le Mans filmed in Fille and they showed this road with trees as filmed near the canal...






This scene is filmed Rue du Canal, the car goes in direction of the village ...



Location 3 - Village of Fille (Restaurant & Butchery):  


Location 4 - Village of Fille (Church):  





Location 5 - enters Place des Jacobins (Le Mans)...

Location 6 - facing the cathedral of Le Mans...

Steve McQueen in Le Mans city location, Cathedral of Le Mans in the background


Credit: Marie Fotini...


Location 7: Statue on Place des Jacobins, Le Mans...

Location 8: Junction Ruaudin (4.5km) - turned on his right, direction Le Mans (8km) on the sign...  




Location 9 - Maison Blanche...  

To see the old house (MARTINI):
(this part of circuit is now abandoned)
Article on this part of Maison Blanche:




Map of the circuit for the year of the filming (68-71) to show the location of Maison Blanche...



Location 10 - stop of the car...

Final location of the journey: across the old house of Maison Blanche (MARTINI on the roof)
This house doesn’t exist anymore.








Restaurant des Hunaudières:




(To the left of the rear of the car is a banner advertising "Polaroil" OIL...)









The Porsche garage in Teloche is where Steve McQueen went during the filming of Le Mans to service the cars...

















Further Research - http://www.rjsmith.com/le-mans-then-and-now.html




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