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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Charles Vanel
Vanel 1934.jpg
Charles Vanel in 1934
Born
Charles-Marie Vanel

(1892-08-21)21 August 1892
Died15 April 1989(1989-04-15) (aged 96)
NationalityFrench
OccupationActor
Film director
Years active1908–1988

Charles-Marie Vanel (21 August 1892 – 15 April 1989) was a French actor and director. During his 76-year film career, which began in 1912, he appeared in more than 200 films[1] and worked with many prominent directors, including Alfred Hitchcock, Luis Buñuel, Jacques Feyder, and Henri-Georges Clouzot. He is perhaps best remembered for his role as a desperate truck driver in Clouzot's The Wages of Fear for which he received a Special Mention at the Cannes Film Festival in 1953.[2]

Biography

Early life

Charles-Marie Vanel was born in Rennes in Brittany.[1][3] He came from a seafaring family and his parents were traders who moved to Paris when he was twelve years old.[1] He was expelled from all the schools he attended. He tried to enlist in the navy, but was rejected due to his poor eyesight.[3] In 1908, he began to perform in the theater, appearing in Hamlet.[3][1] His first film was the 1912 Jim Crow directed by Robert Péguy.[3]

He was mobilized for the First World War in July 1915, but was diagnosed in September with “mental disorders” and sent home. During the war, he took numerous theatrical tours, notably a tour to the US under the direction of Lucien Guitry.[3] He became a member of the Firmin Gémier theatre company at the Théâtre Antoine, before devoting himself exclusively to cinema.[3] His first major contract was with Russian producers Joseph Ermolieff and Alexandre Kamenka,[3] who taught him using Stanislavski's system.

Film career

He began a successful career as an actor, appearing in numerous silent films in the 1910s and 1920s, particularly in the roles of gruff and bitter characters. He considered his "real" film debut to be in Robert Boudrioz's Tillers of the Soil, which was produced by Abel Gance in 1919 but held up for release. He also appeared in Alexandre Volkoff's 10-part serial film The House of Mystery (1923) which pleased audiences and critics.[3]

He appeared in six films directed by Jacques de Baroncelli, including Pêcheur d'Islande (1924), based on the novel by Pierre Loti, which was one of the most popular French films of the decade and showed Vanel's greater range and depth. Others for de Baroncelli included maritime dramas Nitchevo (1926) and Feu! (1927).[3]

With the advent of sound films, his voice, and the inflections he gave, consolidated his popularity as a character actor with a wide range of colorful roles. At the beginning of the 1930s he signed a contract with Pathé-Natan and stood out in three films by Raymond Bernard, Pathé's lead director - Montmartre (1931) as a pimp; Wooden Crosses (1932) as World War I infantryman; and as Javert alongside Harry Baur in Les Misérables (1933).[3]

He was also directed by Maurice Tourneur in Accused, Stand Up! (1930) and Dance Hall (1931), both of which also featured Gaby Morlay. He appeared as a barkeeper in Le Grand Jeu (1934) directed by Jacques Feyder and as an airman in Anatole Litvak's L'Équipage (1935).[3]

The poetic realism film movement in France in the mid to late 1930s saw him appear in Marcel Carné's debut film Jenny (1936) and in Julien Duvivier's Popular Front drama La Belle Équipe in which he was Jean Gabin's friend and romantic rival. The following year, he appeared opposite Erich von Stroheim in The Rail Pirates directed by Christian-Jaque and, in 1938, opposite Jules Berry in Crossroads by Kurt Bernhardt. In 1939, he appeared as a Canadian Mountie hunting Michèle Morgan and Pierre Richard-Willm in La Loi du nord.[3]

In Occupied France, he never stopped working but his credits were fewer. He appeared with Fernandel in The Marvelous Night directed by Jean-Paul Paulin. One of his best films and roles was in Jean Grémillon's The Woman Who Dared starring alongside Madeleine Renaud. Another was Les affaires sont les affaires (1942) by Jean Dréville.[3]

At the Liberation of France in 1944, he was worried by the French Resistance. He explained that his support for Marshal Pétain was because of his memories as a veteran of the First World War. Vanel denounced the excesses of Vichy France, and above all, being a patriot, did not endorse collaboration with the Germans.

After the war, his career slumped and was no longer considered bankable. From 1948, he toured extensively in Italy and appeared in many Italian films, including In the Name of the Law (1949) by Pietro Germi.[3]

The Wages of Fear

Henri-Georges Clouzot helped get him back on track, choosing him to co-star in The Wages of Fear (1953) where he played a tough, truck driver, who gradually reveals his inner fragility. Vanel won an award for best actor at the Cannes Film Festival.[3]

Vanel was again directed by Clouzot two years later in Les Diaboliques and in The Truth (1960). He also appeared as a prosecutor in L'AffaireMaurizius (1954) by Julien Duvivier and in Sacha Guitry's Royal Affairs in Versailles (1954).[3] He won best actor at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival for L'Affaire Maurizius.

In his only Hollywood production, shot on the French Riviera, he played Bertani, a restaurant owner and friend of the character played by Cary Grant in Alfred Hitchcock's 1955 film, To Catch a Thief.[1] In 1956, in Death in the Garden by Luis Buñuel, he appeared alongside Simone Signoret.[3] He was Best Actor at the 1957 San Sebastián International Film Festival for Le feu aux poudres.

Television

The growth of French television gave him new opportunities and in 1972, he triumphed as a patriarch in Les Thibault, an adaptation of the novel by Roger Martin du Gard.

He remained very active during this decade, in particular in the role of a judge in The Most Wonderful Evening of My Life directed by Ettore Scola. A special tribute was given to him at the 1970 Cannes Film Festival.[4] He received a nomination for Best Actor at the César Awards for Sept morts sur ordonnance in 1975 and in 1979, he received an honorary César Award for his career

Francesco Rosi directed him in some of his best later performances in Illustrious Corpses (1976) and Three Brothers (1981) where, almost in his nineties, he plays the character of an old farmer from Apulia, who is visited by his three children.[3] In Italy he won the David di Donatello for best actor in a supporting role.

In 1986, he recorded the song "La vie rien ne va est la" with Mireille Mathieu.

His last film appearance was in Jean-Pierre Mocky's film Les Saisons du plaisir in 1988.

Directing

Vanel directed his only feature film in 1929, Dans la nuit. In 1931, he shot another short film, Affaire Classé with Pierre Larquey and Gabriel Gabrio, released in 1935 under the title Le Coup de minuit.[3]

In 2002, at the request of filmmaker Bertrand Tavernier, Louis Sclavis composed and recorded music for Dans la nuit.

Death

Vanel retired to Mouans-Sartoux in Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, near Cannes, where he lived with Arlette Bailly (1928 – 2015),[1] his third wife, 36 years his junior. He was hospitalized in Cannes on the night of Friday, 14 April 1989 and died in the early hours of the morning the following day.[1] Part of his ashes were scattered off the coast of Menton, the rest were placed in the cemetery of Mougins or Mouans-Sartoux.

Awards

Selected filmography

Year Film Role Director Notes
1912 Jim Crow
1917 La p'tite du sixième
1920 Miarka Mario, le garde-chasse Louis Mercanton
1921 Crépuscule d'épouvante Guillaume Brohan
1921 La fille de Camargue
1922 Possession Dimitri Louis Mercanton
1922 Tempêtes Raoul Mauduit
1923 Tillers of the Soil Bernard Larade Robert Boudrioz
1923 The House of Mystery Henri Corradin Alexandre Volkoff
1923 Calvaire d'amour Georges Brémond
1923 L'autre aile Gaston Lager
1923 Du crépuscule à l'aube
1924 In the Spider's Web Stephen Powers
1924 La mendiante de Saint-Sulpice Gilbert Rollin
1924 La Flambée des rêves Lucien Réneval
1924 Le vol Favier
1924 Heart of an Actress Germaine Dulac
1924 Pêcheur d'Islande Jan
1925 Le réveil Le Prince Jean
1925 Barocco Barocco Charles Burguet
1926 L'Orphelin du Cirque Garment, le traitre / Legru
1926 The Flame Boussat René Hervil
1926 600,000 Francs a Month John Durand Robert Péguy
1926 La Nuit de la revanche
1926 Nitchevo Captain Cartier Jacques de Baroncelli
1927 Charité
1927 The Prey of the Wind Pierre Vignal René Clair
1927 Feu! Le lieutenant Frémiet
1928 Queen Louise Napoleon Karl Grune
1927 The White Slave Dr. Warner Augusto Genina
1927 Martyr Charles Burguet
1927 Die Apachen von Paris Bécot
1928 Da hält die Welt den Atem an
1928 The Crew Maurice Tourneur
1928 Da hält die Welt den Atem an
1928 The Passenger Jacques de Baroncelli
1929 Waterloo Napoleon Karl Grune
1929 Drei Tage auf Leben und Tod - aus dem Logbuch der U.C.1 Der Steuermann
1929 The Love of the Brothers Rott Erich Waschneck
1929 An Ideal Woman Jean Durand
1929 Les Fourchambault
1930 Chiqué Francois
1930 Dans la nuit L'ouvrier carrier
1930 Accused, Stand Up! Henri Lapalle Maurice Tourneur
1930 L'Arlésienne Mitifio, un gardian
1930 Le capitaine jaune Le capitaine
1931 Dance Hall Ramon Maurice Tourneur
1931 La maison jaune de Rio King-Fu / Scalpa
1931 Montmartre André Marco, dit Dédé Raymond Bernard
1932 Wooden Crosses Caporal Breval Raymond Bernard
1932 In the Name of the Law Lancelot Maurice Tourneur
1932 Daïnah la métisse Le mécanicien Michaux
1932 Gitanes Léon
1934 Les Misérables Inspecteur Javert Raymond Bernard
1934 Au bout du monde Georges Laudy
1934 Le Grand Jeu Clément Jacques Feyder
1935 Roi de Camargue Rampal
1935 L'Équipage Le lieutenant Maury
1935 The Green Domino Nebel - un sculpteur
1935 L'impossible aveu Fred
1936 The Volga Boatman Le colonel Goreff Vladimir Strizhevsky
1936 Michel Strogoff Ivan Ogareff Richard Eichberg
1936 La Peur Robert Sylvain
1936 The Flame Victor Boussat André Berthomieu
1936 They Were Five Charles Billot aka Charlot Julien Duvivier
1936 Jenny Benoit Marcel Carné
1936 Les Grands Henri Lormier
1936 Port Arthur Commander Vassidloff
1936 The Assault Alexandre Mérital Pierre-Jean Ducis
1937 Southern Mail L'ambassadeur Herlin Pierre Billon 
1937 Police mondaine Salviati
1937 Troïka sur la piste blanche Michel Steinberg
1937 Abused Confidence Jacques Ferney Henri Decoin
1938 Rail Pirates Henri Pierson
1938 La Femme du bout du monde Durc, l'officier mécanicien
1938 The West Jean Cadière Henri Fescourt
1938 Légions d'honneur Captaine Dabrau
1938 Bar du sud Le capitaine Olivier
1938 S.O.S. Sahara Loup Jacques de Baroncelli
1938 Crossroads Roger de Vétheuil Curtis Bernhardt
1939 Savage Brigade Général Kalitjeff Marcel L'Herbier
1939 Yamilé sous les cèdres le chef maronite Rachid el Hamé
1939 La Loi du Nord Le caporal Dalrymple Jacques Feyder
1940 Cristobal's Gold Le Coronel - le chef de la police Jacques Becker
1940 The Marvelous Night Le fermier Jean-Paul Paulin
1941 The Black Diamond François Mitry Jean Delannoy
1942 Les affaires sont les affaires Isidore Lechat
1942 Promesse à l'inconnue Bernard Parker
1942 Haut-le-Vent François Ascarra
1943 Le soleil a toujours raison L'homme du mas
1943 Les Roquevillard Maître François Roquevillard
1944 The Woman Who Dared Pierre Gauthier Jean Grémillon
1945 Hanged Man's Farm François
1946 Gringalet Ravaut André Berthomieu
1946 Le Bateau à soupe Le capitaine Hervé
1947 La Cabane aux souvenirs Lauragais
1947 Le diable souffle Laurent
1948 The Woman I Murdered François Bachelin Jacques Daniel-Norman
1949 In the Name of the Law Massaro Turi Passalacqua Pietro Germi
1949 Vertigine d'amore Mugnaio Resplanton / France: Emile Resplandin
1950 The Fighting Men Don Salvatore Sparaino Roberto Savarese
1950 Hearts at Sea Nostromo Norus Giorgio Bianchi
1951 The Crossroads Lubiani Fernando Cerchio
1951 Tragic Spell Bastiano Mario Sequi
1951 The Last Sentence Giudice Marco Valsetti Mario Bonnard
1952 Malaire Noguère aîné
1953 The Wages of Fear M. Jo Henri-Georges Clouzot
1954 Royal Affairs in Versailles Monsieur de Vergennes Sacha Guitry
1954 Maddalena Giovanni Lamberti
1954 * On Trial (L'affaire Maurizius) (1954) as Wolf Andergast Wolf Andergast
1954 The Cheerful Squadron Il capitano Hurluret Paolo Moffa
1955 Les Diaboliques Alfred Fichet, le commissaire Henri-Georges Clouzot
1955 To Catch a Thief Bertani Alfred Hitchcock
1955 Tom Toms of Mayumba Carlo Leonardi Folco Quilici
1955 A Missionary Père Gauthier Maurice Cloche
1955 Sunset in Naples Guido Brignone
1956 Difendo il mio amore Verdisio Giulio Macchi
1956 Death in the Garden Castin Luis Buñuel
1957 Burning Fuse Albatrasse Henri Decoin
1957 Les Suspects Commissaire Perrache
1958 Rafles sur la ville [fr] Léonce Pozzi, dit "Le Fondu"
1958 Le Piège Caillé
1958 The Mask of the Gorilla Colonel Berthomieu Bernard Borderie
1959 Les Naufrageurs Marnez
1959 Prisoner of the Volga Ossip Semjonowitsch Victor Tourjansky
1959 La Valse du Gorille [fr] Berthomieu dit 'Le Vieux'
1959 Pêcheur d'Islande L'armateur Mével
1960 The Truth Maître Guérin Henri-Georges Clouzot
1960 Maria, Registered in Bilbao El viejo Ladislao Vajda
1961 Tintin and the Golden Fleece Père Alexandre Jean-Jacques Vierne
1962 La steppa Pére Christophore Alberto Lattuada
1962 Lo sgarro
1963 Rififi in Tokyo Van Hekken Jacques Deray
1963 Symphonie pour un massacre [fr] Paoli
1963 A King Without Distraction Le procureur du Roi François Leterrier
1963 Magnet of Doom Dieudonné Ferchaux Jean-Pierre Melville
1965 Le Chant du monde Marinau, le matelot Marcel Camus
1967 Shock Troops Passevin Costa-Gavras
1968 La prisonnière L'invité au vernissage qui dit 'Oui, ça correspond au schéma du bonhomme' (uncredited) Henri-Georges Clouzot
1969 Ballade pour un chien Viachet
1970 Sébastien et la Mary-Morgane Louis Maréchal Cécile Aubry
1970 Ils Le professeur Swaine
1971 Comptes à rebours [fr] Juliani
1972 La nuit bulgare Bohringer
1972 Gang War in Naples Don Mimo De Ritis Pasquale Squitieri
1972 The Most Wonderful Evening of My Life Il Presidente, Giudice Dutz Ettore Scola
1974 Par le sang des autres Le curé
1975 Sept morts sur ordonnance Old Brézé Jacques Rouffio
1975 Calm Prevails Over the Country [de] Grandfather Parra
1976 Illustrious Corpses Procurator Varga Francesco Rosi
1976 Boomerang Me Ritter José Giovanni
1976 Golden Night Charles Fournier Serge Moati
1976 À l'ombre d'un été Jean Landot
1977 Alice or the Last Escapade Henri Vergennes Claude Chabrol
1978 Ne pleure pas Le grand-père
1980 Le chemin perdu Léon Schwarz
1981 La Puce et le Privé Mathieu Fortier
1981 Three Brothers Donato Giuranna Francesco Rosi
1987 Si le soleil ne revenait pas Anzevui Claude Goretta
1988 Les Saisons du plaisir Charles Van Bergh (final film role)

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Associated Press (16 April 1989). "Charles Vanel, Stage And Screen Actor, 96". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 21 November 2019.
  2. ^ "Charles Vanel - Cinémathèque française". cinema.encyclopedie.personnalites.bifi.fr. Retrieved 21 November 2019.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s Borger, Lenny (26 April 1989). "Charles Vanel, esteemed character actor, dead at 96". Variety. p. 12.
  4. ^ Katz, Ephraim; Fred Klein; Ronald Dean Nolan (1998). The International Film Encyclopedia (3rd ed.). New York: Harper Collins. p. 1412. ISBN 0-333-74037-8.

External links

This page was last edited on 14 November 2022, at 20:43
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