Le Plus Grand Français
Le Plus Grand Français de tous les temps (The Greatest Frenchman of all Time) was a France 2 show of early 2005, based on an original series of Great Britons on the BBC. The show asked the French viewers who they thought was the Greatest Frenchman or Frenchwoman. It was presented by Michel Drucker and Thierry Ardisson, and the final episode was broadcast at the French Senate.
The show was criticized by some historians in that it focused only on personalities of recent French history. Key figures of French history who contributed to the founding of the French nation, such as the national heroine Joan of Arc, the kings Philip Augustus, Saint Louis, and Louis XIV or French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte were largely ignored.
|Rank||Personality||Notability||Nomination defended by||Ref.|
|1||Charles de Gaulle||General and president. Leader of the French resistance movement during World War II. President of France between 1958 and 1969. Admired for giving post-war France international prestige and independence in their foreign policy.||Maurice Druon, historian |||
|2||Louis Pasteur||Chemist. Discovered vaccination, microbial fermentation and pasteurization. Developed vaccines against rabies and anthrax.|||
|3||Abbé Pierre||Priest who was a member of the Resistance movement during World War II. Founder of the Emmaus movement, who help poor and homeless people.|||
|4||Marie Curie||Physicist and chemist. Co-discoverer of radioactivity, radium and polonium. First woman to win the Nobel Prize in Physics (1903) and Nobel Prize in Chemistry (1911) and the only person to have won both.|||
|5||Coluche||Comedian, actor and humanitarian activist. Founder of the Restaurants du Coeur, a non-profit charity movement who distribute food to the needy and help people out with finding housing.|||
|6||Victor Hugo||Novelist, poet and playwright. Author of internationally famous and beloved works, such as The Hunchback of Notre-Dame and Les Misérables. Also campaigned for freedom of the press and against the death penalty and social injustice.||Max Gallo, novelist. |||
|7||Bourvil||Comedian, actor and singer. His films and songs are still classics in France today and beloved in other countries too.|||
|8||Molière||Playwright. Creator of internationally renowned comedy plays such as Tartuffe, The Miser and The Misanthrope. Praised for his satirical wit, socially critical themes and vivid characters. Considered the most important and influential French-language author of all time.|||
|9||Jacques Cousteau||Explorer, inventor, documentary maker and oceanographer. Co-inventor of the Aqua-lung, which introduced modern underwater diving. Explored the oceans and made numerous documentaries about them. Championed for marine conservation.|||
|10||Edith Piaf||Singer. Internationally famous and beloved for tragic and passionate songs, such as La Vie en Rose, Hymne à l'amour, Milord and Non, je ne regrette rien, which have been covered by numerous artists since.|||
From 11 to 100
11. Marcel Pagnol - Novelist, playwright and film director.
12. Georges Brassens - Singer and songwriter .
13. Fernandel - Actor and comedian.
14. Jean de la Fontaine - Poet and fabulist.
15. Jules Verne – Science fiction author.
16. Napoleon Bonaparte – Military, political leader and Emperor.
17. Louis de Funès - Actor and comedian.
18. Jean Gabin - Actor.
19. Daniel Balavoine - Singer, songwriter and musician.
20. Serge Gainsbourg - Singer and songwriter.
21. Zinedine Zidane - Footballer.
22. Charlemagne – King and emperor.
23. Lino Ventura - Actor.
24. François Mitterrand – President.
25. Gustave Eiffel – Architect.
26. Émile Zola - Novelist.
27. Sœur Emmanuelle - Nun and humanitarian.
28. Jean Moulin - Leader of French resistance during World War II.
29. Charles Aznavour - Singer, songwriter and actor.
30. Yves Montand - Actor and singer.
31. Jeanne d’Arc – Military leader.
32. Général Leclerc - Military leader.
33. Voltaire – Philosopher and novelist.
34. Johnny Hallyday - Singer.
35. Antoine de Saint Exupéry - Aviator, novelist and poet .
36. Claude Francois - Singer
37. Christian Cabrol - Cardiologist and surgeon
38. Jean-Paul Belmondo - Actor
39. Jules Ferry - Politician and Prime Minister
40. Louis Lumière - Inventor, film director
41. Michel Platini - Footballer
42. Jacques Chirac – President and Prime Minister
43. Charles Trenet - Singer and songwriter
44. Georges Pompidou – President and Prime Minister
45. Michel Sardou - Singer
46. Simone Signoret - Actress
47. Haroun Tazieff - Vulcanologist
48. Jacques Prévert - Poet
49. Éric Tabarly - Sailor
50. Louis XIV – King
51. David Douillet - Judoka
52. Henri Salvador - Singer and comedian
53. Jean-Jacques Goldman - Singer, songwriter and musician
54. Jean Jaurès - Politician
55. Jean Marais - Actor and comedian
56. Yannick Noah - Tennis player
57. Albert Camus – Author and philosopher
58. Dalida - Singer
59. Léon Zitrone - Journalist
60. Nicolas Hulot - Journalist
61. Simone Veil - Politician
62. Alain Delon - Actor
63. Patrick Poivre d'Arvor - Journalist
64. Aimé Jacquet - Footballer
65. Francis Cabrel - Singer and songwriter
66. Brigitte Bardot - Actress
67. Guy de Maupassant - Author
68. Alexandre Dumas, père – Author and playwright
69. Honoré de Balzac – Novelist
70. Paul Verlaine - Poet
71. Jean-Jacques Rousseau – Author and philosopher
72. Maximilien de Robespierre – Political leader
73. Renaud - Singer and Songwriter
74. Bernard Kouchner - Politician and humanitarian
75. Claude Monet – Painter
76. Michel Serrault - Actor
77. Pierre-Auguste Renoir – Painter
78. Michel Drucker - Journalist
79. Raimu - Actor and Comedian
80. Vercingetorix - Chieftain who led resistance against the Roman army.
81. Raymond Poulidor - Cyclist
82. Charles Baudelaire – Poet
83. Pierre Corneille - Playwright
84. Arthur Rimbaud - Poet
85. Georges Clemenceau – Prime Minister, and journalist
86. Gilbert Bécaud - Singer, songwriter and musician
87. José Bové - Syndicalist
88. Jean Ferrat - Singer and songwriter
89. Lionel Jospin - Prime Minister
90. Jean Cocteau - Dramatist, poet, playwright and filmmaker
91. Luc Besson - Film director
92. Tino Rossi - Singer
93. Pierre de Coubertin - Pedagogue and founder of the modern Olympic Games.
94. Jean Renoir – Film director
95. Gérard Philipe - Actor and comedian
96. Jean-Paul Sartre – Philosopher, novelist and playwright
97. Catherine Deneuve - Actress
98. Serge Reggiani - Actor, singer and comedian
99. Gérard Depardieu - Actor
100. Françoise Dolto - Psychoanalyst
- "De Gaulle plus grand Français de tous les temps - Culture - Nouvelobs.com". Tempsreel.nouvelobs.com. Retrieved 5 November 2011.