April 26, 1970 |
Education and early career
After graduating in French literature and Conservatoire of Cinema (Paris), he joined the French Navy in 1990 for two years on Aircraft-carrier Foch during the Lebanon war and was in charge of the ship’s Television production unit where he made his first reportages and documentaries for the Navy. In 1991 in Paris, Jeauffre founded the nonprofit Jules Verne Adventures along with Frédéric Dieudonné. Dedicated to exploration, conservation, and education, the organization is now based both in Paris and in Los Angeles. In 1992, Jeauffre and Dieudonné launched the annual Paris Jules Verne Festival and the Jules Verne Awards, inaugurated by Jacques-Yves Cousteau. This event, also based in Los Angeles, California, is dedicated to exploration, education and conservation. Jeauffre developed a film production unit to create new adventure & exploration programs for theatres and television.
Jeauffre’s passion for exploration and for the sea led him to conceive scientific expeditions and to create a new concept of documentaries he called Action-documentaries, mixing real-life exploration with fictional content. From 1999 to 2016, Jeauffre wrote, directed and produced several films for TV which include , Devil's Islands and Red and White.
A five-month expedition on the Atlantic aboard the tall ship Belem led to his production of the highly acclaimed and award-winning documentaries:
- Whales of Atlantis
- Amazon Trek (2008 Best Feature Documentary Award, White Sands International Film Festival, New Mexico)
- 100 Years Under the Sea
- Five Months On The Sea - the Jules Verne Expedition.
Two fully illustrated books were also published after the expedition (Jean-Christophe Jeauffre (2003). L'expédition Jules Verne à bord du Trois-Mâts Belem (in French). Equinoxe. ISBN 978-2-84135-352-1. and Jean-Christophe Jeauffre (2002). Esquisses d'un voyage Amazonie-Martinique-Açores. Carnets d'ailleurs (in French). Michel Bez (illus.). Équinoxe. ISBN 978-2-84135-346-0.).
In 2006, he co-wrote and produced the Jules Verne Adventures TV documentary Explorers: From the Titanic to the Moon, starring producer/director James Cameron and veteran Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin. All of the aforementioned films are now being distributed in the US on DVD and Blu-ray with narrations by Christopher Lee and Ernest Borgnine.
Passage to Mars, his latest film, opened in US theatres, September 30, 2016. Narrated by Zachary Quinto, Charlotte Rampling and Buzz Aldrin, the film was praised by critics (New York Times, The Village Voice, filmdoo, Space.com...) and received Best Picture Awards (REF). It tells the story of a NASA Arctic expedition across the Northwest Passage: the first motorized crossing of the Arctic sea ice aboard prototype humvee Okarian. He co-wrote, produced, directed and edited this feature-length documentary which includes ground-breaking Martian imagery from ESA and NASA.
- Film festivals and special events
In 2005 Dieudonné and Jean-Christophe Jeauffre founded the American version of the French nonprofit Jules Verne Adventures. It is based in Downtown Los Angeles and maintains an IRS 501(c)3 status. The inaugural American launch of the Los Angeles Jules Verne Festival (October 2006 at the Shrine Auditorium) has celebrated the work of George Lucas, Harrison Ford, Dr. Jane Goodall and James Cameron and attracted 6,300 attendees.
The Jules Verne Festival traditionally includes an awards ceremony during which selected explorers, environmentalists, filmmakers and movie stars are presented with the Jules Verne Award. Among others, the Jules Verne Award was given to Gérard Depardieu, Catherine Deneuve, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Charlotte Rampling, Claude Lelouch, Johnny Depp, Christopher Lee, Patrick Stewart, Mark Hamill, Buzz Aldrin, William Shatner, Tippi Hedren, Stan Lee, Ray Bradbury, Ted Turner, Richard Dean Anderson, Larry Hagman, Christopher Reeve, Roy E. Disney, Tony Curtis, Ernest Borgnine, Steve McQueen, TV series Heroes, Lost, Stargate SG1 and Battlestar Galactica cast and crew, and has celebrated movie classics such as Blade Runner, Star Trek, Superman, Forbidden Planet, Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Planet of the Apes, Some Like It Hot and The Wild Bunch.
- Anne Riley-Katz (June 18, 2007). "Jean-Christophe Jeauffre, co-founder of the 19-year-old French festival, said that the decision to come to Los Angeles was driven in part by the city's status as the entertainment industry's home, but for other reasons as well.". Los Angeles Business Journal.
- Julie Riggott (October 17, 2008). "Jeauffre and Dieudonne first presented the festival in Paris in 1992, and it has since grown, attracting 40,000 people over the course of six days and becoming recognized globally as the most significant film festival devoted to adventure and exploration.". The Los Angeles Downtown News.[permanent dead link]
- "Frederic Dieudonne and Jean-Christophe Jeauffre co-founded the festival 19 years ago in Paris, where it has been a rousing success. Recognizing the U.S. market, they exported it to Los Angeles, and found an audience. The festival was a great addition to Downtown.". The Los Angeles Downtown News. December 14, 2007.[permanent dead link]
- Eric Richardson (August 13, 2008). ""Exploration, education and conservation through imagination: that's our mission at the Porthole," festival co-creator Jean Christophe Jeauffre told those on-hand for the ribbon cutting. "Hopefully the children who visit will realize how vast is the world. It's not only our cities, it's not only our modern civilization; there are so many other things to see."". Blogdowntown.
- Terry Keefe (October 25, 2008). "The event is put together and hosted by Frederic Dieudonne & Jean-Christophe Jeauffre, both filmmakers themselves, who come to L.A. each year to produce the event.". The Hollywood Interview.
- Jeff Sneider (October 11, 2006). "Jeauffre bills the fest, which is celebrating its fifth year in France, as "the ultimate event to explore and preserve our planet" and "a love letter from the French to the American people."". Variety.
- Henrick Vartanian (August 13, 2010). "Jules Verne Festival founders, Jean-Christophe Jeauffre and Frédéric Dieudonné explain: "Our aim is to foster a culture of sustainability in a rarely reached yet important new audience in a fun and entertaining way."". Brave New Hollywood.
- Susan King (November 8, 2010). "On Thursday, the Jules Verne Festival is paying tribute to Steve McQueen at the Cinerama Dome. The late actor's son, Chad, will accept the Jules Verne Legendaire Award from the festival's founders, Jean-Christophe Jeauffre and Frederic Dieudonne.". LA Times.
- Susan King (November 11, 2009). ""The Wild Bunch" is riding into town for a special 40th-anniversary screening Thursday at the venerable Million Dollar Theater in downtown L.A. Jean-Christophe Jeauffre and Frederic Dieudonne, founders of the Jules Verne Festival, are presenting the screening, with all proceeds going to the Jules Verne Nature & Education Program.". LA Times.