Nationality: French. Born: Françoise Sorya Dreyfus in Paris, 27 April 1932, daughter of the actor Henri Dreyfus (performed as Henri Murray, or simply Murray) and Geneviève Sorya (family name Durand). Education: Attended École de la rue Milton, Paris; École de Barbezieux; Pensionnat de Bandol; Institution de Megève; studied dance at Marseilles Opera; studied theater in England, then at Cours Bauer-Therond. Family: Married 1) Edouard Zimmermann, 1949 (divorced); 2) the director Nico Papatakis, 1951 (divorced 1954), daughter: Manuela; 3) Pierre Barouh, 1966 (divorced); 4) the actor
La Maison sous la mer (Calef)
La Fleur de l'âge (Carné—unfinished)
Les Amants de Vérone ( The Lovers of Verona ) (Cayatte) (as Georgia "Juliette" Maglia)
Golden Salamander (Neame) (as Anna)
Conquêtes du froid (Vidal); Noche de tormenta ( Nuit d'orage ) (de Moyora)
La Bergère et le ramoneur (Grimault) (as voice); The Paris Express ( The Man Who Watched Trains Go By ) (French) (as Jeanne); Le Rideau cramoisi ( Les Crimes de l'amour ; The Crimson Curtain ) (Astruc) (as Albertine)
Ich suche dich (Fischer)
Forever My Heart ( Happy Birthday ) (Arliss and Knowles)
Contraband Spain (Huntington) (as Elena Vargas); Les Mauvaises Rencontres (Astruc)
Nina (Jugert) (as Nina Iwanowa); Stresemann (Braun)
Tous peuvent me tuer ( Anyone Can Kill Me ) (Decoin); Pot-Bouille ( The House of Lovers ) (Duvivier); Montparnasse 19 ( Modigliani of Montparnasse ; The Lovers of Montparnasse ) (Jacques Becker) (as Jeanne Hebuterne)
La Tête contre les murs ( The Keepers ) (Franju); Carve Her Name with Pride (Gilbert)
The Journey ( Some of Us May Die ) (Litvak) (as Eva); Les Dragueurs ( The Chasers ; The Young Have No Morals ) (Mocky)
La dolce vita (Fellini) (as Maddalena)
Lola ( Donna di vita ) (Demy) (title role); Le Farceur ( The Joker ) (de Broca) (as Helene Laroche); L'imprévisto (Lattuada); Quai Notre Dame (Berthier); Il giudizio universale ( The Last Judgment ) (de Sica)
Sodoma e Gomorra ( Sodom and Gomorrah ; The Last Days of Sodom and Gomorrah ) (Aldrich and Leone) (as Queen Bera); Les Grands Chemins ( Of Flesh and Blood ; Il Baro ) (Marquand) (as Anna)
8½ ( Otto e mezzo ) (Fellini) (as Luisa Anselmi); Il giorno più corto ( The Shortest Day ) (Corbucci); Il terrorista (de Bosio); Il successo (Morassi and Risi) (Blasetti)
Liolà ( A Very Handy Man ); Le voci bianche ( White Voices ; Le Sexe des Anges ; Under Cover Rouge ) (Campanile and Franciosa) (as Lorenza); La fuga (Spinola) (as Luisa)
Il morbidone (Franciosa); La stagione del nostro amore ( A Very Handy Man ; Liola ) (Vancini) (as Mita)
Lo scandalo (Gobbi); Un Homme et une femme ( A Man and a Woman ) (Lelouch) (as Anne Gauthier)
Un Soir, un train ( One Night, a Train ) (Delvaux) (as Anne)
The Model Shop (Demy) (as Lola); Justine (Cukor) (title role); The Appointment (Lumet) (as Carla)
Si c'était à refaire ( If I Had to Do It All over Again ; A Second Chance ) (Lelouch) (as Sarah Gordon)
Mon Premier Amour ( My First Love ) (Chouraqui) (as Jane Romain)
Salto nel vuoto ( A Leap in the Dark ; Leap into the Void ) (Bellocchio) (as Marta Ponticelli); Une Page d'amour (Chouraqui—for TV)
La Tragedia di un uomo ridiculo ( The Tragedy of a Ridiculous Man ) (Bertolucci) (as Barbara Spaggiari)
Qu'est-ce qui fait courir David? (Chouraqui); Le Général de l'armée morte ( Il generale dell'armata morta ) (Tovoli)
Vive la vie (Lelouch); Success Is the Best Revenge (Skolimowski) (as Monique de Fontaine)
Flagrant Desire ( A Certain Desire ) (Faraldo)
Un Homme et une femme: vingt ans déjà ( A Man and a Woman: 20 Years Later ) (Lelouch) (as Anne Gauthier)
La Table tournante (Grimault); Arrivederce e Grazie (Capitani)
There Were Days and Moons ; Bethune: The Making of a Hero ( Dr. Bethune ) (Borsos—released in U.S. in 1993) (as Marie-France Coudaire)
Voices in the Garden (Bouton); Das Schicksal des Freiherrn von Leisenbohg (Molinaro)
Ruptures (Citti) (as Marthe); Les Marmottes ( The Groundhogs ) (Chouraqui) (as Françoise)
Ready to Wear ( Pret-a-Porter ) (Altman) (as Simone Lowenthal)
Les Cent et une Nuits ( A Hundred and One Nights ) (Varda) (as Actor for a Day); Dis-Moi Oui
Hommes, femmes, mode d'emploi (Lelouch) (as The Widow)
L.A. Without a Map (Kaurismäki) (as Herself)
1999 Madeleine (Bouhnik) (as Madeleine's Mother)
Fables de la Fontaine en bandes dessinées , Paris, 1984.
Interview in Télérama (Paris), 24 May 1980.
Ecran (Paris), November 1979.
Ciné Revue (Paris), 3 April 1980, 26 March 1981, 17 March 1983, and 12 July 1984.
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Anouk Aimée made her film debut in 1946 in a small role in the Calef film La Maison sous la mer . Her first starring role was in Marcel Carné's La Fleur de l'âge , but that film remained unfinished. In effect, then, her first real success was in Cayatte's love drama Les Amants de Vérone , a loose adaptation of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet . Critics had reservations about the script, but there was no doubt about the obvious talent of the young actress. She went on to play in Astruc's Le Rideau cramoisi and Les Mauvaises Rencontres . Not only her abilities as an actress but also the photogenic qualities of her face, with its fine lines, expression of elation, and suggestive gaze, were used to particular effect in Duvivier's Pot-Bouille , Becker's Montparnasse 19 , and Franju's La Tête contre les murs .
But she was not always lucky. In spite of being known outside France (she made films in Spain, Great Britain, and Germany), she did not always work with directors who knew how to make use of her art. Then in the early 1960s she attracted worldwide attention in the title role of Demy's Lola and particularly in the part of the rich, haughty Maddalena in Fellini's La dolce vita , in which her aristocratic demeanor provided a telling contrast to the more elemental charms of Anita Ekberg. She appeared again for Fellini in the role of the patient wife in 8½ . Aimée remained in Italy during the first half of the 1960s, and made a variety of films for Italian directors which are of varying qualities and genres—among them, Liolà , Le voci bianche , and La stagione del nostro amore .
The greatest success of her career came in 1966, in a film by the then still relatively unknown French director Claude Lelouch, Un Homme et une femme . The young director succeeded in rendering a seemingly banal love story in an unexpected and new way, through his mastery of camera technique and setting the action in the milieu of automobile racing. Yet the tremendous international success it enjoyed (it won both the Grand Prize at the Cannes Film Festival in 1966 and an American Oscar) were undoubtedly due to the excellent performances of the stars, Aimée and Jean-Louis Trintignant.
In her subtle portrayal of the heroine—self-protective, then succumbing to a new love—Aimée seemed to create a new kind of femme fatale and a characterization she would return to in the future: a woman of sensitivity whose emotions are often kept secret. She has continued to play that woman, with the same moderation and tact but within a growing gamut of different emotions. A good example is Belgian director André Delvaux's Un Soir, un train in which she plays a Walloon woman who sacrifices herself to her husband, a university professor played by Yves Montand. The complicated relationship between the couple, exacerbated by their different languages and hovering on the boundary between reality and fantasy, ends in painful and tragic misunderstanding. Aimée's interpretation is perfect.