Claude Brasseur

  1. Philippe Nicaud, Voulez-vous danser avec moi/Come Dance With Me,  France, 1959.  French actors queued to play with Brigitte Bardot even if, in this  instance,  it meant being in drag.  Brasseur got his BBreak later: La bride sur le cou, 1961.  Claude was the son of the great 30s/40s star Pierre Brasseur (and a Godson of Ernest Hemingway, no less). His own son, Alexandre, is also a stage-screen actor. 
  2. Bernard Fresson, Macédoine, France, 1971.   After Jean-Paul Belmondo refused, Brasseur was asked to join Michèle Mercier in her producer husband’s new project.  About what was then La femme sandwich. The son of the great Pierre (and father of Alexandre) said he was  formed by forever meeting what his dad called “colleageus from the office” – Jean Vilar, Louis Jouvet, Michel Simon, Yves Montand, Simone Signoret, Jean-Paul Sartre… Sure beats RADA
  3. Yves Montand, Le sauvage, France, 1975.     Impressed by  M*A*S*H and The Long Goodbye, wriiters Jean-Loup Dabadie and Jean-Paul Rappeneau first wanted Elliott Gould as the titular, rugged American. Producer Raymond Danon said such an important French production must have French stars. So, Catherine Deneuve and… ? Well not Jean-Paul Belmondo – he wanted his latest lady, Laura Antonelli, as his co-star.   ”A comedy?” said Delon. Comedies don’t work with me. I mean,  can you see me cooking fish?” (He suggested Claude Brasseur). Lino Ventura  didn’t like the story. Finally, Montand fell for the title – but not playing second fiddle to Deneuve.  Can she run more slowly?” he complained. ”Otherwise, I can’t catch her and we’ll have to change the ending.” He never did catch her. Deneuve being among the very few leading ladies he was never able to seduce. 
  4. Donald Sutherland, Oviri/Wolf at the Door, Denmark, 1986.  When planned as  a Franco-Danish co-production, the French suggested Gérard Depardieu (surprise, surprise) or Brasseur as Paul Gauguin.
  5. Guy Bedos, Il est genial papy, France. 1987.   Before Gene Wilder was signed by realisateur Michel Drach and had to leave to tend his terminally ill wife, Gilda Radner.


 Birth year: 1936Death year: 2020Other name: Casting Calls:  5