Catherine Rouvel

1. – Marguerite Cassan, La Rupture (US: The Breakup), France-Italy-Belgium, 1970. For the first and only time in his career, Claude Chabrol asked for nude photos of his candidates. Because the highly sexual Emilie was totally naked in virtually every scene. Because it was for the respected nouvelle vague icon, many actresses agreed, including Chabrol’s favourite, Catherne Rouvel. But she was pregnant and felt her body was far from its best. “Alors,” said Charbol, “she was superbe!” (Ironically, Cassan and Rouvel had both appeared in Le dejeuner sur l’herbe, 1959, when Rouvel was delightfully naked sur l’herbe).

2. – Nathalie Rousell, Le Chateau de ma mère, France, 1990. In 1967, playwright and realisateur Marcel Pagnol – then 72 – tried for a second time to shoot this part of his autobiography. He wanted his mother played by Rouvel – lusty discovery of a great Pagnol fan, director Jean Renoir, in Le Dejeuner sur l’Herbe, 1959. She had started a long reign as Pagnol’s Fanny on stage in 1964.


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