Louvre the big winner from book

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 15 June, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 15 June, 2006, 12:00am

The Da Vinci Code has been a marketing boon for the Louvre Museum. Last year, a record 7.5 million visited the museum, and that number is not likely to decrease. No doubt, president and director Henri Loyrette is basking in the added attention. The French curator, who is in town opening a chalcography collection at the University of Hong Kong, was the guest at the Foreign Correspondents' Club lunch on Wednesday. Not surprisingly, most conversations eventually led back to the blockbuster movie.

'We tried to be very cautious and it worked very well,' Loyrette says. 'They were very professional and the filming was very impressive to see.'I didn't read the book but I saw the movie twice, which is enough. It is long; 21/2 hours. Anyway, if it brings somebody who normally wouldn't have come to the Louvre, then it's good.' As long as they're not self-flagellating albino monks.