Celebrated French theatre director, filmmaker and actor Patrice Chéreau, 68, died in Paris on Monday after a battle with cancer.
Patrice Chéreau, a celebrated French theatre director, filmmaker and actor died in Paris on Monday from cancer. He was 68.
Chéreau, who was known as a contemporary Renaissance man, became involved in the arts at ayoung age. Born in the western French village of Lézigné on November 2, 1944, his father was a painter and his mother a sketch artist. Chéreau grew up mostly in Paris, where he enrolled in the theatre programme of the prestigious secondary school, Lycée Louis-le-Grand, at the age of 16.
Considered a prodigy, Chéreau took on a succession of jobs directing theatre throughout his 20s before entering the world of opera. In 1976, he garnered acclaim as an opera director with his staging of Richard Wagner’s powerful Der Ring des Nibelungen at the Bayreuth Festival in Germany.
Over the course of his bustling career, Chéreau worked with a number of renowned theatre and opera figures, including French playwright, director and filmmaker Roger Planchon. The two men fostered a close relationship, collaborating on a number of projects together over the years.
Chéreau also made his directorial debut in the film industry during the 1970s with “La Chair de l’orchidée,” an adaptation of James Hadley Chase’s 1948 novel by the same name.
His greatest international success in film, however, was the 1994 period piece “Queen Margot”. Starring French actors Isabelle Adjani and Vincent Pérez, the film went on to win the Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival that year. It also won five awards at the César Awards, the French version of the Oscars.
Born: 11/2/1944, Lézigné, Maine-et-Loire, FranceDied: 10/7/2013, Paris, Île-de-France, France
Patrice Chéreau’s western – actor:The Last of the Mohicans – 1992 (General Montcalm)