‘A Man and a Woman’ actor was 91 in ‘Love’ – The Hollywood Reporter
Jean-Louis Trintignant, the thoughtful French actor who starred in art house classics such as A man and a woman, My night at Maud’s, The conformist, Three colors: Red and Love, is dead. He was 91 years old.
Trintignant died Friday at his home in Gard, southern France, his wife Marianne and his agent told Agence France-Presse.
Trintignant received numerous accolades throughout his more than 60-year career, including the 1969 Cannes Best Actor award for Costa-Gavras’ political thriller. Z and a César in 2013 for Michael Haneke’s Lovewhich also won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film.
With over 130 screens and over 50 stage credits to his name, Trintignant was a highly prolific and respected talent who could perform anything from Shakespeare to French commercial comedies, arthouse favorites to Bertolucci , Kieślowski and Truffaut to popular novels and science fiction. fi movies – like when he provided the voice of a talking brain in The city of lost children (1995).
Trintignant became an international star after his turn as a racing driver and in love with Anouk Aimée in Claude Lelouch A man and a woman (1966), which won the Academy Awards for Best Screenplay and Best Foreign Language Film. He and Aimée were hailed as “the best screen couple since William Powell and Myrna Loy” by The Guardian.
In 2017, Trintignant said in an interview that he was done as an actor. But he decided to take on one last role, reprising the character he played opposite Aimée in the epilogue of Lelouch in 2019 for A man and a woman.
Although he was a major French star for half a century, Trintignant remained out of the public eye for the most part, except for a high-profile fling with Brigitte Bardot while filming And God created women (1956), directed by her husband, Roger Vadim (he played the cuckold in the film). The affair propelled Trintignant to the front pages of local tabloids, while the film transformed Bardot into an international sex symbol.
Her life was marked by tragedy: in 2003, her first daughter, actress Marie Trintignant, was murdered by French rock star Bertrand Cantat during a hotel room dispute in Lithuania. And in 1970, his second daughter, Pauline, died aged 9 months while the actor and his then-wife, Nadine, were shooting a movie in Rome. (The event was fictionalized in the 1971 film It only happens to otherswith Catherine Deneuve and Marcello Mastroianni.)
Known for his intensely withdrawn characters and hypnotic voice, which he used to record several popular audio collections of French literature and poetry, Trintignant was a humble performer with a remarkable screen and stage presence. Yet he never chewed up the scenery or tried to stand out in the spotlight.
In one of his last interviews, he ironically reflected on his profession.
“I was extremely shy. And being famous didn’t interest me,” he told the French daily. Nice morning. “You know, it’s fun the first time, then not at all. Why are they rewarding us? We are already well paid. They better give Oscars to people who work in jobs that aren’t fun at all.
Trintignant was born on December 11, 1930 in Piolenc, in the south of France. Her father, who fought in the resistance during World War II, was a local industrialist and mayor. His uncle, Maurice, was the first French Formula 1 driver to win a championship, inspiring Trintignant to take up motor racing. (The actor did his own stunts in A man and a woman and was part of the France Star Racing team. He suffered a near-fatal accident during the Le Mans 24 Hour race in 1980.)
After the family moved to Aix-en-Provence, Trintignant began acting in his late teens and early twenties, performing plays by Molière and Shakespeare. He then studied to become a director at the famous IDHEC film school in Paris. In order to pay the bills, he took on minor screen roles, landing his first big break in 1956 as one of three men involved with promiscuous Juliete (Bardot) in And God created the woman.
Trintignant then disappeared from the scene to complete his mandatory military service, which included a stint in the Algerian War that would affect him forever. But he returned as one of the protagonists in Vadim’s adaptation of Dangerous Liaisons (1959), alongside Gérard Philipe, Jeanne Moreau and Boris Vian.
He made dozens of films over the next decade, including A man and a woman; With Alain Robbe-Grillet The man who lies (1968), which earned him a Golden Bear in Berlin; Claude Chabrol’s erotic thriller The Hinds (1968); the foreign language Oscar winner Z, in which he plays an idealistic young lawyer; and that of Eric Rohmer My night at Maud’s (1969), considered one of the best French films of the 1960s.
Trintignant kicked off the 1970s with what was arguably his best screen role, playing a tormented assassin in The conformist, Bernardo Bertolucci’s searing and splendid political thriller set in pre-World War II Fascist Italy. The film was immediately hailed as a classic; Trintignant claimed it and Love were the best movies he ever made.
Alongside a busy film career, Trintignant was a regular stage presence in Paris, beginning with a 1960 production of Hamlet at the Theater des Champs-Elysées. He would play in plays by Jean Giraudoux, Françoise Sagan, William Gibson and Louis Aragon, winning a Molière nomination in 2005 for Samuel Benchetrit. Less two.
Late in his life, he would perform live readings of poems by authors such as Guillaume Apollinaire, Jacques Prévert, Boris Vian and Robert Desnos.
Trintignant worked less from the mid-1990s to spend more time in his native southern France, where he invested in a vineyard – Domaine Rouge Garance – specializing in precious Côtes du Rhône.
Still, the end of his career was marked by a handful of major roles. He played retired judge Kern in Krzysztof Kieślowski Three colors: Red (1994), which was nominated for three Oscars and turned out to be the director’s last masterpiece. He also starred in Jacques Audiard’s first two feature films at the helm, See how they fall (1994) and A self-taught hero (1996), and received a César nomination for Best Supporting Actor in Patrick Chereau Those who love me can take the train (1998).
But it was his performance at age 82 in Haneke’s Love (2012) which became one of the highlights of his career, earning Trintignant a César. Playing a husband tending to his incapacitated wife (Emmanuelle Riva), he delivered a low-key and incredibly moving performance that was one of his greatest.
Of the film, Trintignant told the French weekly The Sunday Journal: “The character moved me enormously. Like him, I am at the end of my life. And like him, I think a lot about suicide. Whatever role Haneke wants to give me, I will take it.
Indeed, one of Trintignant’s last screen roles was in Haneke. Happy ending, on which he performed most of his scenes in a wheelchair. He continued to perform on stage until 2018 in a show called Trintignant/Mille/Piazzolla which mixed poetry and music, then joined Aimée for a new time at the Saga A man and a woman in The Best Years.
“Getting old is just a series of problems,” he said in an interview after announcing he had cancer. “But in the end, it was good that I stayed alive for so long. I got to meet a lot of interesting people.