A controversial new biography has been released by French advertising executive Jaques Seguela, who hosted the dinner at which French President Nicolas Sarkozy first met wife Carla Bruni.
AFP - "Carla, do you dare kiss me on the mouth, right now, in front of everyone?" a smitten President Nicolas Sarkozy whispered at his first meeting with Carla Bruni, according to a new memoir.
Key details of the most talked about romance in world politics have been given by renowned advertising executive Jacques Seguela, who invited Sarkozy to his Paris apartment in late 2007 to cheer him up after his divorce from second wife Cecilia.
Also on the guest list was Bruni, the 40-year-old supermodel turned singer and former lover of stars, including Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger and guitar legend Eric Clapton.
Seven weeks later, after a whirlwind romance, Sarkozy and Bruni were married and France had a glamorous new first lady. In his new autobiography, out this week, Seguela recounts what happened.
"Thus began an unexpected game of seduction between two wild cats, each in its turn marking its territory and teasing the other," 75-year-old Seguela wrote of the moment his guests gathered for dinner.
"We were witnessing, without realising, a meeting that would make all the front pages."
While the Elysee refused to comment on the memoir, the broad details of the pair's "blind date" have been public for a while, and confirmed by the new first lady in media interviews.
The only singles at the party, they hit it off over dinner, he gave her a lift home and she gave him her phone number.
That much was known, but Seguela's book may embarrass the first couple with its sensational ear for detail.
"On June 1 you're going to sing at the Casino theatre in Paris. You see? I already know your programme," Sarkozy told his neighbour at dinner, according to the host's account.
"On that night, I'll be in the front row and we'll announce our engagement. You'll see, we'll be like Marilyn and Kennedy," he declared, referring to the rumoured romance between Marilyn Monroe and the late US president.
"An engagement, never!" she replied. "I'm not going to live with anyone again, unless he gives me a baby."
"A baby? I've already raised five. Why not six? I'm the best equipped man in France for that -- I've a doctor on standby 24 hours a day," Sarkozy is said to have replied.
Sarkozy warned his new acquaintance, however, that living with him would not be easy, as he is always hounded by press photographers. Carla snorted, telling him he was an amateur at dealing with paparazzi.
"My time with Mick was secret for eight years. We went to all the world capitals and we were never photographed once. I disguised him according to my mood; sometimes with a beard, sometimes a goatee," she reportedly said.
Apparently jealous of his rockstar rival, Sarkozy reportedly retorted: "How could you stay for eight years with a man with such ridiculous wiry legs."
Later, as the evening wore on, Sarkozy invited Carla to join him on his Christmas holiday in Egypt. Seguela writes that she turned him down then, although she did in fact later famously go with him on the trip.
After the couple had parted for the night, Carla called Seguela.
"What charm, intelligence, attentiveness, power, seduction your friend has," she reportedly told him. "But I find him a bit rude. I gave him my number and he hasn't called me yet."
The couple had only been apart for 10 minutes.
Date created : 2009-02-13