The Elysée Palace will be exercising more damage control after a São Paulo restaurateur, Italian-born businessman Maurizio Remmert, 61, claimed last week to be the father of former model, folk singer and French presidential consort Carla Bruni. In an interview published last week in the Estado de Säo Paulo newspaper, Remmert said he had a six-year affair with Carla’s mother Marisa, which resulted in Bruni’s birth on Dec. 23,1967 Marisa, a concert pianist, was married to Alberto Bruni Tedeschi, an opera composer and tycoon, who died in 1996. According to Remmert, Bruni, who by some accounts may already have wed French President Nicolas Sarkozy, was told the news by her mother just before Alberto Tedeschi died.
The news that Remmert was the father of Bruni first leaked out a year ago, when Remmert gave an interview to the culinary section of the Estado. During the interview, the reporter noticed a photograph of Bruni at Remmert’s home and asked if he knew the Italian-French singer/model. Other people who were present during the interview replied, “He’s her father.” At the time, the news went virtually unnoticed.
Last week, Remmert said that he met Marisa when he was 19 years old and she was 32, and has remained on friendly terms with the Bruni family ever since. Since 1996, when she found out that he was her real father, Bruni speaks to Remmert frequently, he said. He also sees his grandson, Aurelien Enthoven, Bruni’s son, whose father is the philosopher Raphäel Enthoven.
But now that international journalists have discovered his identity, Remmert, who is the chef of the Vecchio Torino restaurant in an upscale area of Säo Paulo, has had little rest. “I cultivated 61 years of a discreet life only to have everything turned into an inferno,” said Remmert, who has lately had many runins with the tabloid press in Säo Paulo. “I never wanted notoriety. My daughter is an artist, a public figure. I’m not.” M
The story you want is part of the Maclean’s Archives. To access it, log in here or sign up for your free 30-day trial.
Experience anything and everything Maclean's has ever published — over 3,500 issues and 150,000 articles, images and advertisements — since 1905. Browse on your own, or explore our curated collections and timely recommendations.WATCH THIS VIDEO for highlights of everything the Maclean's Archives has to offer.