French actor Jean-Louis Trintignant has died at the age of 91

Jean-Louis Trintignant, a key figure in French cinema and theater, died on Friday at the age of 91, his wife Mariane Hoepfner Trintignant told AFP in a press release delivered by his agent. He died peacefully at his home on Friday morning.

An unmistakably recognizable voice, a magnetic presence with a touch of melancholy, Jean-Louis Trintignant led an immense career for half a century, punctuated by around 160 roles in theater and cinema, from “And God … created woman” to “Love”.

He went down in cinema history with Claude Lelouch’s “A Man and a Woman”, in 1966 he won the interpretation prize on the Croisette for “Z” by Costa Gravas and the César for best actor in “Amour” by Michael Haneke in 2013. Three highlights of his Career.

>> Read also: this large format dedicated to the career of Jean-Louis Trintignant

Jean-Louis Trintignant, the discreet

The death of Mary

This perfectionist with elegant modesty was also a concerned and reserved man, who said he had had suicidal temptations: “I admit I’ve never been very cheerful.”

This pessimism accompanied him long before the death of his daughter Marie, with whom he was very close. She died in 2003 after being beaten by her companion, the singer Bertrand Cantat.

A few months earlier, the father and daughter had performed Apollinaire’s “Poèmes à Lou” on stage as a duo.

This tragic death never stopped haunting him: “I could have ended my life at that moment,” he confided to me. Urged on by his relatives, he returned to the stage and found “therapy” in poetry and theatre. The boards, his “real job,” he said. “We make films a bit out of vanity” and “to stop shyness”.

>> Jacob Berger’s reaction in the forum:

Actor Jean-Louis Trintignant is dead / Forum / 4 min. / Today at 18:00

Connection to BB

Born on December 11, 1930 in Piolenc, southern France, to an industrialist and nephew of racing driver Maurice Trintignant, he grew up on a hard road, with a sense of honesty that never left him. A shy young man who seemed always somewhere else, he took comedy lessons from Charles Dullin in Paris.

He made his stage debut in 1951 in Schiller’s Marie Stuart and on screen in Christian-Jaque’s Wenn alle Kerle der Welt (1956). He toured that same year with Brigitte Bardot (“And God…Created a Woman”, by Roger Vadim). Her affair with BB creates a lot of conversation.

After traumatic military service in Algeria, the actor returns with Les Liaisons Dangereuses, also directed by Roger Vadim. His nervous and sensitive game seduces.

>> On view: an RTS archive from September 1973 on the making of the film “L’escapade” by Swiss director Michel Soutter and starring Jean-Louis Trintignant

Jean-Louis Trintignant on the set of L'escapade [RTS]

On the set of l’Escapade (complete) / One Day One Hour / 5 min. / September 13, 1973

A man and a woman

With his romantic love composition in “A Man and a Woman”, he becomes the most touring actor alongside Anouk Aimée, like Belmondo and Delon. Altogether he will act in around 120 films…

He has a penchant for ambiguous, impenetrable, disturbing characters. He feels just as comfortable in mainstream film (“Brennt Paris?”, René Clément) as in the avant-garde (“L’homme qui ment”, by Alain Robbe-Grillet, worth the Silver Bear for best actor in Berlin) or political, like “Z”.

He also toured Italy, notably in “Le Fanfaron” by Dino Risi and “Le Conformiste” by Bernardo Bertolucci. Jean-Louis Trintignant himself directed two films, “A Busy Day” and “The Lifeguard”, without much success.

>> Excerpt from the famous film “A Man and a Woman”:

Big comeback in 2012

In the 1980s, the nonconformist turned his career back to the theater. That doesn’t prevent him from filming some big roles in the cinema, in “See how the men fall” or “Three Colors: Red”, where he plays a taciturn former judge.

He retired from film sets for nearly a decade after the death of his daughter before resuming his duties in 2012’s Love, in which he plays an octogenarian confronting his wife’s slow agony.

He then found Haneke for the role of a suicidal old citizen in Happy End, in competition at Cannes in 2017, the year he gave himself a final show reading poems by Prévert, Vian and Desnos at the Salle Pleyel in Paris bot. then on tour.


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