Paul Carvalho R.I.P.

Written by  //  August 31, 2023  //  Absent Friends  //  Comments Off on Paul Carvalho R.I.P.

John Curtin:
My great friend and fellow filmmaker, Paul Carvalho, died peacefully at his home in Montreal, this evening [17 August]. Paul and I met 35 years ago when we both worked as TV reporters in CBC’s Montreal newsroom, before leaving for careers in independent film production.
Besides making 20+ documentaries of his own, Paul was a story consultant or co-writer on many of my most challenging films, including my last mammoth undertaking, The Trials of Alan Dershowitz.
We travelled on more than a dozen shoots together, from Resolute Bay to Moscow to Kampala. There were fabulous steaks at Smith & Wollensky in New York and roast beef and Yorkshire pudding at Simpson’s in the Strand in London.
But it’s the countless hours of discussions about film making, current affairs, politics and our own Last year, after he was diagnosed with cancer, Paul and I went on a wonderful, sunny, spring trip to Italy. We wandered the streets of Rome, San Gimignano and Sorrento. And ferried out to Capri, which he’d first visited with his parents as a child. One of Paul’s last passions was studying Italian. He nursed his fifth language to fluency, ordering countless gelati, as I struggled to resuscitate the Italian I acquired as a 20 year old.
Paul, you were an incredible source of support and encouragement in life and, especially, in this tough world of “show” business. You were my most enduring, loyal and trusted friend. Your energy, enthusiasm and joie de vivre will be missed hugely. Why couldn’t you have stuck around a little longer? The world will be an emptier place without you.

FAREWELL from Paul Carvalho (YouTube)
Montreal filmmaker, Paul Carvalho, says goodbye to his friends and family after a life filled with much love and joy. – edited by his great friend and colleague, Robert Corneiller.

A celebration of Paul Carvalho’s life will take place at 11a.m. Thurs, August 31 CDN Funeral Home, 4525 Cote des Neiges, Montreal.

Paul Carvalho, NF’95, Montreal-based filmmaker, dies at 72
(Nieman News) Carvalho was the first Quebec-based journalist to receive a Nieman Fellowship at Harvard University, where he studied during the 1994-1995 academic year.

Paul Carvalho is a documentary director, writer and producer based in Montreal, Canada, who has had a key creative role in some 20 films since 1996. In search of his characters and locations, Paul has travelled from New York to London and Rome to Rio, from the heart of Africa to the Canadian Arctic, and as far away as East Timor. But his most important work concerns his city. Montréal, mon amour, mon histoire is a series of five one-hour films about the history of the city. The documentaries were made on the occasion of the 375th anniversary of the city’s founding (summer of 2017.) The films were made in collaboration with Ici Radio-Canada and broadcast by PBS stations and around the world.
Before becoming a filmmaker Paul Carvalho was a radio and television news reporter for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in Montréal and Toronto. Paul was the first Québec-based journalist to receive a Nieman Fellowship at Harvard University. All of Paul’s films were shot and written in French and English, and on occasion simultaneously in both languages. A native of Brazil, Paul also speaks Portuguese and Spanish, having travelled and lived in several countries of the Americas as a young ma

Montréal, mon amour, mon histoire
This five-hour-long documentaries series explores the Aboriginal, French and British roots of Montréal. Supported by nearly one thousand photographs, paintings and maps drawn from major public archives and private collections, this series brings together the city’s builders in a vast panoramic portrait of the first metropolis of Canada.

October 6, 1951- August 17, 2023
When he arrived in Montreal half a century ago, he didn’t know that the city was named after Mount Royal; he hardly knew anything about Canada at all. He hailed originally from Latin America and at first he spoke English with a pronounced accent. But he would go on to become the city’s television biographer, in English and French, on the occasion of its 375th anniversary, and to make many other historical and biographical Canadian documentaries in a career spanning four decades. Paul Carvalho, CBC journalist, independent documentarist and author died peacefully at his home at age 72.
Born Paulo Antonio de Carvalho-Neto in Asuncion, Paraguay, he roamed the Americas with his family all through his childhood and adolescence. His father was a Brazilian Cultural Attaché serving the Spanish-speaking countries. Following a military coup in Brazil, the family arrived in Los Angeles a few days before Christmas, 1968. In 1976, as Montreal prepared to host the Olympic Games, Radio Canada International looked for Portuguese-language speakers. It found Paul, who quickly fell in love with Montreal’s European allure and embraced Canadian life with a passion.
A long marriage to Sandra Shatilla, a Montreal native of Lebanese descent, gave Paul the opportunity to grasp the crisis in the Middle East and in particular the plight of the Palestinian people, whom the couple visited in 1984. Paul remained committed, for the rest of his life, to the Palestinian call for justice.
As a Montrealer, Paul sought not to remain enclosed within any one community. He cultivated anglophone and francophone friendships, Jews and Arabs, Europeans and adoptive Montrealers from all over the world. In 2010, after living for decades in Westmount, he moved to Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, a traditionally French-speaking Montreal neighbourhood, and lived gratefully surrounded by people from that culture until the end of his life. His last film, made for Ici Radio-Canada, was a biography of Ernest Cormier, the architect who designed the University of Montreal.
“I asked myself what I wanted from my life,” Paul said more than once. “I wanted a life that felt interesting and passionate. A life that did not feel like a replica of others. By that measure, I believe I’ve succeeded.”
Paul leaves behind him several rich and meaningful relationships. The Montreal filmmaker John Curtin, with whom Paul collaborated on several projects, was a most special friend. Robert Cornellier, the Quebecois film director, was a constant cherished presence. So were Alain Dubois, Aliki Economides and Eleanor Beattie. Paul says goodbye to his niece Giselle Carvalho and his brother Arthur Carvalho in Los Angeles; in Rio de Janeiro, to his sister Luci da Silva and cousin Suzette Carvalho; in Campinas, Brazil, his brother Luis Marreco, his nephew Alexandre Marreco, and their families.
Late in life Paul had one last chance to experience a joyful, deep love. He met Cynthia Ruth Davis and exulted in the affection of their relationship, in sickness and health, until the end.A Celebration of Paul’s life will be held at 11:00 a.m. Thursday, August 31 at Cote des Neiges Funeral Home, 4525 Cote des Neiges Rd.

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