Eager for knowledge, discoveries and new experiences, Marie-Soleil Tougas lives her life to the fullest. Twelve years his senior, director Jean-Claude Lauzon has a similar devouring appetite. Despite the personalities of the antipodes, and through a thousand traps, they weave a fragile but sincere love relationship. Out of sight, they survive in their love against all odds. Until the end.
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In 1985, and at only 32 years old, Jean-Claude Lauzon has already created several advertising campaigns for television, some of which are unforgettable. That year, he shot a series of advertisements promoting the use of condoms with the theme “Love, it protects itself”, for the Ministry of Health and Social Services. Carl Marotte, which was recently revealed by Throw a count, one of them. Another part shows a young actress who is almost 16 years old, with whom Lauzon worked for the first time. Despite the age difference, Marie-Soleil Tougas pleased him.
Throughout the day, the director admired the maturity and determination of the teenager, at the same time that he was troubled by his young age. In the book Marie-Soleil, published by Éditions Stanké, the author, Louise Bourbonnais, reported that at the end of filming she told Serges Tougas that she had eyes for his daughter. “Come near it, and I will kill you,” he replied. Defiant, Lauzon did not stop himself from launching Marie-Soleil: “Come back to see me when you’re 18!”
These exchanges do not give a proper insight into the dynamic between Marie-Soleil and Jean-Claude. For his part, the new youth did not care about the beauty of Lauzon, who has a reputation as a heartthrob. According to people on set, he even showed interest in various ways.
In the following days, they rub shoulders for the post-production needs of the advertising message. Then, they meet again sometimes on a friendly basis. Years passed, and after dating Alain Choquette, Marie-Soleil was 24 years old when she saw the director again, by chance, in a restaurant. It was 1994. This was the time when their love story took shape.
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THE CAT AND THE MOUSE
With the public, the young actress has an impeccable image, enhanced by her involvement in Opération Enfant Soleil. The director’s is completely different. Lauzon is a lone wolf with a fiery and unpredictable personality who won’t bend to express his way of thinking. He has a supposed thug side bordering on delinquent. In the performance Biography, broadcast on Canal D, Gaston Lepage was completely frank: “Jean-Claude is a rather selfish person. I allow myself to say this because he is my best friend. Marie-Soleil is the exact opposite .” From the outside, this relationship is at best anachronistic, and at worst, doomed to failure, but the young woman has a Mother Teresa side. Biography, Louise Bourbonnais says: “He said that he must have a challenge, that there must be something to change the person, otherwise he would be bored. With Jean-Claude, it was served to perfection.
Marie-Soleil sees snow, and she knows how to negotiate with such a personality, her first lover, Nicolas, who has characteristics similar to Jean-Claude. Irresistibly drawn to her, she knew she had to give him all the freedom she demanded if she wanted him to be close to her. Thus, he knew how to get away at the right time, before he informed her without wearing white gloves. Yes, he is abrupt and can be rude in the way he speaks. At the same time, he was impressed by the fact that the young woman was independent and that she organized herself well without anyone’s help. However, from there to tell him…
In general, Lauzon cannot express his feelings to her or show her any signs of affection. He will suffer from this for most of their relationship. By confessing to a friend of the couple that she doubts that he still loves her, she understands that this indifference is a way for her to protect herself and avoid getting hurt. That said, he will not let his guard down as long as their relationship lasts. on Biography, Marie-Soleil’s mother, Micheline Bégin, argued: “I felt that, quietly, he developed a kind of respect for Marie-Soleil that he didn’t have at first. At first he loved her for herself. In the end, he loved her for her.”
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“NO CHUM” SOUND
Jean-Claude Lauzon, a man as social as he is a lover of nature, lives in Sutton, far from the danger of the city. On weekends, Marie-Soleil used to go there. He knows what is sacred to him and what his passions are, which he practices with his friends. If he takes her, their relationship will deteriorate. He became interested in hunting and fishing. In 1996, he began to pass his pilot’s license. He is experienced in high-sensation activities, he that, from the time of Resourceful, dare a hot air balloon, parachute or scuba gear. With Gaston Lepage, he also hang-glided. And what about his adventure in Fort Boyard! So she has learned to accompany what she calls “not boyfriend” in some of her “guy activities”. However, he must compromise to preserve what is between them. Gaston Lepage expressed it this way: “Of course he loves her, but he doesn’t just love her, and he wants to understand us, and to understand her too. Whether he understands it or not, that’s how it is. Maybe that’s caused a lot of friction between them, but when he traveled with her, she took care of him like a bear takes care of her cubs. She’s a mother hen you rarely see.” However, from time to time, despite the efforts of the young woman, and even with the best will in the world, he seriously questions this relationship. However, they got back together.
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Guy Fournier, a close friend of both, witnessed all the doubts, all the sorrows. On August 8, 2012, in his column for Journal of Montrealhe wrote: “In June (1997), after the last rehearsal ofEnt Cadieux, I ate with Marie-Soleil. She has just resumed living with Jean-Claude for the 10th time. Their love never rested. Although I loved Jean-Claude like a son, I advised Marie-Soleil several times to end their relationship. This time again, the young woman prefers to listen to her heart rather than the advice of her confidant. So he gives a new chance to his “non-boyfriend”, who offers to spend his summer vacation with him. Marie-Soleil is attracted by this proposal, especially since Jean-Claude seems sincerely willing to have fun with her. He accepted. Guy Fournier doesn’t like the idea that he’s at risk of injury. At most he managed to get a compromise from him. Before leaving on a trip, he gives him an ultimatum: if he doesn’t change his behavior with her, it will be the end, once and for all. The rebel agreed.
The couple’s first vacation included a week of salmon fishing. Everything went very well. Finally! Marie-Soleil has begun to achieve what she has dreamed of for three years. At home, he was already thinking about the next expedition, which they would do in a few days.
Jean-Claude and his friend Gaston Lepage own a chalet in Haute-Mauricie, near the Gouin dam. On August 7, 1997, the latter went there with his inseparable friend Patrice L’Ecuyer. They were soon joined by the couple, who went there in a Cessna piloted by Lauzon. Gaston’s wife, Louise Laparé, spent time with them in the chalet. When he returned, he gave Guy Fournier a phone call.
Twenty years ago, in a column he signed on August 10, 2017 in Journal of Montreal, he recalled: “He told me that Marie-Soleil never seemed so happy to him.” And Jean-Claude? “He’s never been so good to her.”
The special 25th anniversary magazine of Marie-Soleil Tougas and Jean-Claude Lauzon is now available at jemazine.ca.
The documentary Marie-Soleil and Jean-Claude: Beyond the Stars available on the Vrai platform.