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Romain Gary

From Academic Kids

Romain Gary (May 8, 1914December 2, 1980) was a novelist, film director, WWII pilot and diplomat.

Born Romain Kacew in Wilno, Romain Gary grew up in Wilno (now Vilnius, Lithuania) and later in Warsaw, Poland. The father, Arieh-Leib Kacew, abandomed his family in 1925 and remarried. From this time Rmain Gary was raised by his mother, Nina Owczinski. When he was fourteen, he and his mother moved to Nice, France. In his books and inteviews, he preseted many differnet versions of his father's origin, parents occupation an childhood. He later studied law, first in Aix-en-Provence and then in Paris. He learned to pilot an aircraft in the French Air Force in Salon-de-Provence and in Avord, near Bourges. Following the Nazi occupation of France in World War II, a Jew, he fled to England and under Charles de Gaulle served with the Free French Forces in Europe and North Africa.

After the war, he worked in the French diplomatic service and in 1945 published his first novel. He would become one of France's most popular and prolific writers, authoring more than thirty novels, essays and memoirs, some of which he wrote under the pseudonym of Emile Ajar. He also wrote one novel under the pseudonym of Fosco Sinibaldi and another as Shatan Bogat.

In 1952, he became secretary of the French Delegation to the United Nations in New York, and later in London (in 1955).

In 1956, he became General Consul of France in Los Angeles.

He is the only person to win the Prix Goncourt twice. This prize for French language literature may only be awarded once to any given author. Romain Gary, who had already received the prize in 1956 for Les racines du ciel, published La vie devant soi under the pseudonym of Emile Ajar in 1975. The Academie Goncourt awarded the prize to the author of this book, without knowing his real identity. A period of literary mystery followed. Gary's cousin Paul Pavlowitch posed as the author for a time. Gary later revealed the truth in his posthumous book Vie et mort d'Emile Ajar.

Gary's first wife was the British writer, journalist, and Vogue editor Lesley Blanch (author of The Wilder Shores of Love). They married in 1944 and divorced in 1961. From 1962 to 1970, Gary was married to the American actress Jean Seberg, with whom he had a son, Alexandre Diego Gary.

He also co-wrote the screenplay for the motion picture, The Longest Day and co-wrote directed the 1971 film Kill!, starring his ex-wife, Seberg.

Suffering from depression after the 1979 suicide of his former wife, Jean Seberg, Romain Gary died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound on December 2, 1980 in Paris, France.

Contents

Selected bibliography

As Romain Gary:

As Emile Ajar:

As Fosco Sinibaldi:

As Shatan Bogat:

Filmography

As director:

Biographies

External links

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