[19] Clouzot directed and wrote the short film Le Retour de Jean, which was part of the anthology film Return to Life. [20] The Catholic Church considered the film "painful and hard, constantly morbid in its complexity". [48] Clouzot today is generally known for his thriller films The Wages of Fear and Diabolique. Typical of many French films of the 1950s, Clouzot's style was influenced by American film noir; unlike the French New Wave films which followed it, Diabolique also revealed the … [29] The Wages of Fear was the second most popular film in France in 1953 and was seen by nearly 7 million spectators. Clouzot fell into a depression over her death. [14] Alfred Greven, the director of Continental, knew Clouzot from Berlin and offered him work to adapt stories of writer Stanislas-André Steeman. American films were banned… Dogged by ill health, branded a Nazi collaborator and … [10] Clouzot's time in the sanatorium would be very influential on his career. [33] Les Espions was not released in the United States and was a financial failure in France. Director Otto Preminger adapted Le Corbeau into his 1951 film The 13th Letter. [18] Grevin was against Clouzot making this film, stating that topic was "dangerous". After the ban was lifted, Clouzot reestablished his reputation and popularity in France during the late 1940s with successful films including Quai des Orfèvres. [1][3] Clouzot's next film was the comedy Miquette et Sa Mère, which was a financial failure. If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations). [10] Brigitte Bardot described Clouzot as "a negative being, forever at odds with himself and the world around him". Clouzot is buried beside Véra in the Montmartre Cemetery. [1], After the success of Le Dernier de six, Clouzot was hired as the head of Continental's screenwriting division. He was later hired by producer Adolphe Osso to work in Berlin, writing French-language versions of German films. [24] For Quai des Orfèvres, Clouzot asked the author Stanislas-André Steeman for a copy of his novel, Légitime défense, to adapt into a film. [1] Clouzot's first film for Continental was the adaptation of Steeman's mystery novel Six hommes morts (Six Dead Men). During the day, numerous regulations, censorship and propaganda, made the occupation increasingly unbearable. It is clear from this that the claims that Clouzot was too traditional, safe and unexperimental - levied at him by French New Wave filmmakers - ring completely false. [5] In Berlin, Clouzot saw several parades for Adolf Hitler and was shocked at how oblivious he felt France was to what was happening in Germany. [18] During his two-year banishment from filming, Clouzot worked with one of his supporters, Jean-Paul Sartre, who had been one of the first people to defend Le Corbeau. Controversy trailed Clouzot throughout his career. [45] When basing screenplays on written work, Clouzot often changed the stories dramatically, using only key points of the original story. During the film's production, Clouzot met Véra Gibson-Amado, whom he married on 15 January 1950. [38] Lead actor Serge Reggiani fell ill one week after shooting began and had to be replaced. By visiting our website or transacting with us, you agree to this. The exhibition also features Le mystère Picasso (The Mystery of Picasso) (1956), Clouzot’s documentary portrait of the artist at work, in which creation and destruction are twinned human impulses; his rarely screened first short film, the expressionist comedy La terreur des Batignolles (1931); two darkly clever policiers for which he wrote the screenplays, George Lacombe’s Le Dernier des six (1941) and Henri Decoin’s Strangers in the House (1942), as well as his own The Murderer Lives at Number 21 (1942); and Henri-Georges Clouzot’s Inferno (2010), Serge Bromberg and Ruxandra Medrea’s award-winning documentary about Clouzot’s notoriously ill-fated, hallucinatory psychological thriller L’Enfer, an unfinished film that nearly finished him off. [26] For Manon, he wanted to cast unknown actors. [1] Production on The Wages of Fear lasted from 1951 to 1952. In La Vérité, the trial of Dominique Marceau (Brigitte Bardot, in an affecting performance) for the murder of her former lover becomes an assassination of her character, casting a harsh light on the hypocrisy and cruelty of male-dominated society. After the release of his comedy film Miquette et sa mère, Clouzot married Véra Gibson-Amado, who would star in his next three feature films. [1][11] French cinema had changed because many of the producers he had known had fled France to escape Nazism. [13] Clouzot himself also became ill during production, which led doctors and insurance agents to order the production be stopped. From the introduction "Despite their differences, these films share connections, a common essence which is nothing less than their notion of mise-en-scène, or a filmic écriture, based on shared principles.Just as one recognizes the vintage of a great wine by its body, color, and scent, one … [1] The Mystery of Picasso won the Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival, but was a financial failure in France, being seen by only 37,000 filmgoers during its initial run in 1956. [22] The anti-Nazi resistance press considered it Nazi propaganda because of its negative portrayal of the French populace. [1] In the 1970s, he wrote a few more scripts without ever filming them,[1] including a feature about Indochina. [44] Véra Clouzot died of a heart attack shortly after the filming of La Vérité. Les Espions would be the last acting role for Clouzot's wife Véra, who had been suffering from severe heart problems since filming Les Diaboliques (incidentally, in that film she had also portrayed a frail woman suffering from heart disease). Les Espions featured actors from around the world including Véra Clouzot, Curd Jürgens, Sam Jaffe and Peter Ustinov. This record is a work in progress. Clouzot’s best movies may be conventional in form, but they’re far more powerful than anything by Truffaut or Godard. By visiting our website or transacting with us, you agree to this. [10], Despite criticism following the arrival of the French New Wave, career retrospectives of Clouzot's work have been positive. After the release of La Vérité, Clouzot's wife Véra died of a heart attack and Clouzot's career suffered due to depression, illness and new critical views of films from the French New Wave. [28] Clouzot named his production company after Véra and had her star in all three films made by the company: The Wages of Fear, Diabolique and Les Espions. [24] In 1955, Clouzot directed the documentary The Mystery of Picasso, about the Spanish painter Pablo Picasso. His masterful breakthrough feature Le Corbeau (The Raven) (1943), made for the Nazi-stooge company Continental Films, was attacked on all sides—the right-wing Vichy regime, the left-wing Resistance press, and the Catholic Church—and though Sartre and Cocteau came to his defense, Clouzot was banned for several years after Liberation from making another film. The film follows Picasso drawing or painting 15 different works, all of which were intentionally destroyed following the film's production. [31] The next film he worked on was L'Enfer, which was never completed. The French New Wave was a film movement from the 1950s and 60s and one of the most influential in cinema history. [26] Véra also contributed to the script of La Vérité. [28] In order to gain as much independence as possible, Clouzot created his own production company called Véra Films, which he named after his wife. They established him as a master of suspense to rival Alfred Hitchcock, though ironically the French New Wave critics who so embraced Hitch would, woundingly, entirely disdain Clouzot. Henri-Georges Clouzot was born in Niort, Deux-Sèvres, to mother Suzanne Clouzot and father Georges Clouzout, a book store owner. [28] The sole female role in The Wages of Fear is played by Véra. More than any other film À Bout de Souffle (Breathless) (1960) exemplified the New Wave movement; serving as a kind of manifesto for the group. He started writing the film, The Wages of Fear, with his brother, Jean Clouzot, who would collaborate with him on all his subsequent films under the name of Jérôme Geronimi. Clouzot moved to Montfort l'Amaury in the early 1950s, so his use of its streets in Les Diaboliques may be a matter of convenience more than anything, though Susan Hayward argues that it is a deliberate riposte to those who censored Le Corbeau.S everal other films of the 1950s and early '60s feature this same village without necessarily knowing of its role in Le Corbeau. Clouzot waited for Delair at the stage door and after meeting her, the two became a romantic couple for the next 12 years. In 1964, Clouzot was an acknowledged titan of French cinema, venerated for films like“The Raven”(1943), “Quai des Orfèvres” (1947),“The Wages of Fear”(1953) and … [1] The film was never finished because the costs became too high. Clouzot had used all possible means to try to anger the actor during the filming,[1] and after he quarreled with Fresnay's wife, Yvonne Printemps, Fresnay and Clouzot broke off their friendship. [1] The Wages of Fear is about a South American town where a group of desperate men are offered money to drive trucks carrying nitroglycerin through rough terrain to put out an oil well fire. [17][47] Pierre Fresnay recalled that Clouzot "worked relentlessly, which made for a juicy spectacle...That's to say nothing for his taste of violence, which he never tried with me". [11] In 1939, he met actor Pierre Fresnay, who was already an established film star in France. 1. The film is a 15-minute comedy with three actors. After being fired from UFA studio in Nazi Germany due to his friendship with Jewish producers, Clouzot returned to France, where he spent years bedridden after contracting tuberculosis. One of the few distractions available to the French citizens was the cinema, but the choice of what to see was limited. Once widely misunderstood—the director was charged with Nazi sympathies for Le corbeau and was derided by the French New Wave—the work of Henri-Georges Clouzot today looks far ahead of its time. He scoured schools to find an actress for the lead role, and chose 17-year-old Cécile Aubry after viewing over 700 girls. [1][8], Throughout the 1930s, Clouzot worked by writing and translating scripts, dialogue and occasionally lyrics for over twenty films. Both films were screened and reviewed in America as well as in France, and were rated among the best thrillers of the decade. In response, Clouzot wrote the script for La Vérité. He continued to make daring films into the end of the decade, even when he wasn't making thrillers. [2], Clouzot met his second wife, Inès de Gonzalez, for the first time at a casting call for a film based on Vladimir Nabokov's Laughter in the Dark. [31] The film was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Inferno would have been one of the most daring - for good and for… [19] Clouzot directed and wrote two films that were released in 1949. Once widely misunderstood—the director was charged with Nazi sympathies for Le corbeau and was derided by the French New Wave—the work of Henri-Georges Clouzot today looks far ahead of its time. See more ideas about jean luc godard, 1950 fashion, france photos. Clouzot also directed documentary films, including The Mystery of Picasso, which was declared a national treasure by the government of France. [12] Le Corbeau was a great success in France, with nearly 250,000 people having seen it in the first months of its initial release. The woman volunteers herself as a model for these pictures and is surprised at her own pleasure in the activity. Henri-Georges Clouzot was a superior filmmaker Nothing really went right for Henri-Georges Clouzot. But that’s what it is: the battle between the New Wave and Clouzot is elusive and the victor inconclusive - Clouzot’s reputation survived the ensuing decades intact. [1], Clouzot's health problems kept him from military service. In the early and mid-1950s, Clouzot drew acclaim from international critics and audiences for The Wages of Fear and Les Diaboliques. Twenty years after his death, film critic Noël Herpe wrote in the French film journal Positif that "Les Diaboliques (just like Les Espions and La Verite) reveals a sterile and increasingly exaggerated urge to experiment with the powers of fiction". Clouzot was one of the established French directors that the self-promoting New Wave denounced as stuffy and obsolete, and unworthy of the privilege of making movies (!). [1], After the liberation of France, Clouzot and several other directors were tried in court for collaborating with the Germans. [54], French film director, screenwriter and producer, Return to filmmaking and acclaim (1947–1960), Later career and failing health (1960–1977), Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, Henri-Georges Clouzot: The Enlightened Tyrant, Interview with Clouzot biographer Marc Godin, The 33rd Academy Awards (1961) Nominees and Winners, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Henri-Georges_Clouzot&oldid=991910787, Wikipedia articles with BIBSYS identifiers, Wikipedia articles with CANTIC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with CINII identifiers, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with Trove identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 2 December 2020, at 13:40. [6] The quality of his work led producer Adolphe Osso to hire him and send him to Germany to work in Studio Babelsberg in Berlin, translating scripts for foreign language films shot there. While the plot, reminiscent of a thousand Film Noir B movies, is simple, the film itself is stylistically complex and revolutionary in its breaking of traditional Hollywood storytelling conventions. [11] Clouzot retitled the film Le Dernier des six, having been influenced by actress Suzy Delair while writing the script, allowing her to choose the name of the character she would play. [9] While living in Germany, Clouzot saw the films of F. W. Murnau and Fritz Lang and was deeply influenced by their expressionist style. As this comprehensive retrospective amply demonstrates, Clouzot’s was not a “cinema of quality,” as the French New Wave critics unjustly derided, but rather a “cinema of cruelty,” to which Franju, Polanski, Kubrick, and Haneke also belong. [12] His outlook on life is reflected in his own films that focus on the darker side of humanity. [10] Clouzot also studied the fragile nature of the other people in the sanatorium. [1] In 1934, Clouzot was fired from UFA Studios for his friendship with Jewish film producers such as Adolphe Osso and Pierre Lazareff. [39], With the exception of the comedy film Miquette et sa mère, every directorial feature of Clouzot involves deception, betrayal and violent deaths. While at the peak of their careers, Clouzot beat out Hitchcock for the right to adapt the novels on which Diabolique and The Wages of Fear were based, and MoMA’s retrospective opens with these heart-stopping and perennially imitated suspense thrillers. [48] Film historian Philipe Pilard wrote, "There is no doubt that if Clouzot had worked for Hollywood and applied the formulas of U.S. studios, today he would be lauded by the very critics who choose to ignore him". [1], Clouzot biographer Marc Godin suggested Clouzot's life provides clues to understanding his style as a filmmaker. Jealous husbands and wives concoct elaborate schemes to do each other in. [31] In this early and mid-1950s period, with the films The Wages of Fear and Les Diaboliques, Clouzot came to be fully embraced by international critics and audiences. [41] After finishing La Prisonnière, Clouzot's health grew worse.
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