This Friday, May 20, France 3 broadcast the documentary Romy, free woman, in which we learned in particular that the actress fought against Harry Meyen to obtain custody of their son, David.
The height of happiness? “To love. Completely. A lifetime“, retorted Romy Schneider, as reported in the France 3 documentary, Romy, free woman, airing this Friday, May 20. If she loved, she was often unloved. This was the case with her first husband, Harry Meyer, known shortly after his painful separation from Alain Delon. It is in the spring of 1965, in Berlin, that their paths crossed. The German playwright is forty years old. Fourteen more than Romy Schneider. Above all, he reveres the theater and has nothing but contempt for the cinema. So much so that it does not fail to make many derogatory remarks to his wife. The one who went so far as to pay for her divorce so that they could live their romance. The one who made him a father.
During their marriage, Romy Schneider was indeed five months pregnant. Their little David showed the tip of his nose on December 3, 1966. But very quickly their couple faltered. “Harry’s misogynistic contempt has become unbearable“, says the documentary. Harry Meyen does not hesitate to belittle his wife, in public, during an interview. So Romy Schneider moves away and multiplies the adventures of filming – like the one with Jean-Louis Trintignant on filming The train. In 1972, she finally decides to leave Harry Meyen. Romy Schneider is 33 years old and is more radiant than ever. Their divorce – stormy – is not finalized until seven years later. Not without difficulty.
Harry Meyen’s demand to grant Romy Schneider custody of their son
Both want custody of their only son. Harry Meyen only grants it to him on one condition: to recover half of the fortune of the star in exchange. “To get custody of David, she does not hesitate to sell Harry Meyen six million francs, or more than four million euros. Unheard of for the time!“, explains the documentary. And to outbid: “We are in the mid-1970s and once again she reverses the roles by being the one who pays. Always a detachment from the money that is for her only a way to buy her peace of mind.” “In reality, I was just ahead of my time“, analyzes Romy Schneider, before ensuring: “At a time when there was no question of women’s liberation, I undertook my own liberation. I forged my own destiny and I don’t regret it“. A feminist before her time.
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