The Grand Palais, next to the Champs Elysées in Paris, has been home to more than a century of French refinement and haute couture.
The vast, ornate glass-covered nave has played host to Chanel fashion shows, and exhibitions by the Ecole des Beaux Arts, but a project set to start on Monday will see it transformed into the ultimate pop culture venue – an American-style drive-in cinema, complete with cheeseburgers and a rollerskating rink.
Before any French culture vultures bleat out the words Sacre Bleu! in disgust at the makeover, don't worry – it will just be a temporary arrangement as part of a summer film festival.
The Cinéma Paradiso event, organized by French film company MK2, looks set to attract thousands of spectators between Monday and 21st.
Cult American classics like Pulp Fiction, Grease and Taxi Driver, as well as a preview of Star Trek: Into Darkness, will be projected onto the big screen in an authentic 1950s drive-in atmosphere, according to the schedule of events.
Parking won’t be a problem, since the organizers are providing open-top Fiat 500s as seating, as well as an American-style diner, roller-skating rink and dance hall, to complete the authentic ambience.
However if cinema-goers need something French and tasteful to keep their bearings, they can opt for the “Moet et Chandon” package, which provides them a car seat as well as a glass of champagne.
Tickets are selling out fast. For more information click here.