Princes et princesses episode guide

Introductions are coming, gradually, as I get to watch them properly. These synopses are "spoiler-free," insofar as I have only hinted at the twists and surprise endings which so characterise these stories. However, if you have already committed to buying the DVD, I would advise not reading any further for the optimum experience.

La Princesse des diamants The Princess of Diamonds

princesb1.jpg It is said that somewhere, there is a field where sparkling diamonds can be found amidst the grass, and in a gazebo lies an enchanted princess, frozen like a statue and guarded by a dragon. If one desires to free the princess from this curse, they would have to find all one-hundred and eleven of the diamonds of her broken necklace. Many princes have attempted this impossible task, but all have disappeared without a trace…

An original story by Michel Ocelot.

Le Garçon des figues The Fig Boy

princesb2.jpg There once lived a young Egyptian man whose sole possession was a fig tree — in summer it bore him fruit; in winter it was his home. But one morning, he is astounded to find the tree bearing fruit in the middle of winter! Humbled by this miracle, he presents the ripest of these figs to the queen of Egypt, who rewards his generosity with her own — an exchange which drives the palace intendant mad with jealousy. But though he easily deceives both the queen and the honest young man, sometimes even undiscovered deception can have its own punishment…

Based on an ancient Egyptian tale.

La Reine cruelle et le montreur de fabulo The Cruel Queen and the Fabulo Trainer

princesb5.jpg In the year 3000 there lives a powerful and pitiless queen who so detests the men that seek to posses her that subjects these suitors to an unwinnable trial — to remain undetected by the the powers of her mega-radar for a day or else be disintegrated. That is, until the trainer of a strange whistling creature takes up the challenge of evading the radar. Could it be that queen is not really cruel, and that her anger only stems from her loneliness?

An original story by Michel Ocelot.

La Sorcière The Sorceress

princesb3.jpg There was once a medieval king, whose kingdom was threatened by the presence of a powerful sorceress. Failing to rid the people of this fear himself, he issues forth a challenge: that whosoever can infiltrate the sorceress' fortress shall win the hand of his daughter in marriage. The princess, renowned for her beauty, attracts the attention of many a nobleman. But no matter how ingenious their attack, however much firepower they use, the impregnable castle lives up to its name. So how can a simple, unarmed boy succeed where whole armies have failed?

An original story by Michel Ocelot.

Prince et princesse Prince and Princess

princesb6.jpg In an elegant garden, a handsome young prince cajoles his newly engaged fiancé, a beautiful young princess, into proclaiming their love for each other with a kiss. Now, we all know the story of what happened when a frog was kissed by a princess — so what what would happen if a princess were to kiss someone who is already a prince?

An original story by Michel Ocelot.

Icare Icarus

princesb7.jpg The video interview at includes an extract from it.

Based on the ancient Greek tale of Daedalus and Icarus.

On ne saurait penser à tout One Cannot Think of Everything

Le Manteau de la vieille dame The Old Lady's Coat

princesb4.jpg It's early in the 19th century, the height of the Edo-jidai, and old widow Ôiko-san is visiting a good friend. She wears this afternoon a beautiful — not to mention expensive — coat, a memento of her former glory with an interesting story behind behind it. But later on, as Ôiko-san prepares to leave, a lowly bandit passing by outside happens to overhear them. It should be easy to deceive this helpless old woman into handing over the fortune on her back… Shouldn't it?

Based on an Edo-period Japanese tale. The character of Ôiko (大い子) appears, generally as a younger woman, in a number of folk tales, such as "Ôiko's Rice Balls" ("Ôiko no Nigirimeshi") in YANAGITA Kunio's Japanese Folk Tales.

The above images are mostly taken from and all are © 1999 Les Armateurs/La Fabrique/Studio O/Gébéka Films.

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