Gérard Lanvin

  1.  Jean-Hugues Anglade, 37.2 le matin/Betty Blue, France, 1980.   “I wrote it,” said director Jean-Jacques Beineix, “with Lanvin in mind.”  He did not do erotica!
  2. Richard Berry, Le jeune marie, France, 1982.    First film of Bernard Stora.
  3. Jean-Paul Belmondo, Les Morfalous, France, 1983.    Just like his split from Jean Gabin after 16 films (!), the prodigious dialoguist-turned-auteurMichel Audiard wanted a rest from Jean-Paul Belmondo and suggested Lanvin opposite Victor Lanoux. Then, realisateur Henri Verneuil had lunch withBebel… and hedecided on a 14th (and final) Audiard scenario. After 129 scripts in 36 years, the writer known as The Little Cyclist died in 1985 at 65. Even his fans saw the Clint Eastwood influence on Bebel’s polars. Now he all but ripped Clint off in an actionerabout a bunch of French Foreign Legionaires stealing a fortunein gold during WWI.Bebel’s Heroes, anyone? Though the posterlooked like Rambo in a kepi.
  4. Gérard Klein, Les Cavaliers de l’orage, France-Yugoslavia, 1983.   For Jean Giono’s grand romance of the Grande Guerre, 1914-18, realisateur Gérard Verges first aimed too high. He wanted Gérard Depardieu and Hanna Shygulla as the peasant smuggler involved with an officer’s widow turned military medico.  When they passed, their usual rivals were seen: Lanvin, Daniel Auteuil, Nathalie Baye, Bernard Giraudeau – before Klein and Marlene Jobert nailed it.
  5. Christophe Lambert, Subway,  France, 1984.  Gaumont wanted Marlene Jobert and Lanvin, but new auteur Luc Besson preferred Adjani and Lambert – not a safe bet as far as the venerable company was concened.  D’oh!
  6. Gérard Depardieu,  La lune dans le caniveau, France, 1986.    Refusing Beineix again… You  can see, on-screen, the exact moment when l’auteur Beineix switches his love from Depardieu to co-star  Nastassja Kinski.
  7. Jean-Marc Barr, Le grand bleu, France, 1988.    Young, new realisateur Luc Besson auditioned the Paris possibilities as well as those in LA, London, New York, Rome for “physically interesting good actors of 25/30 who were generous, human and unafraid of deep-seat diving.”  Sans oxygen!
  8. Jean-Roger Milo, Germinal, France, 1992.     Locating his heroes was (relatively) easy for Paris  realisateur Claude Berri. Not so Zola’s “mechant absolu,” Chaval. After musing on Lanvin, Berri called up the amazing Milo –  working, as per usual, for Bertrand  Tavernier. 
  9. Emil Kusturica, La veuve de Saint-Paul, France, 1999.     Inheriting the film from realisateur Alain Corneau, Patrice Leconte had little time to find his Neel.  He wanted an unknown, then a “stranger,” like, say, Swedish Peter Stormare, or one or his previous stars, Lanvin or Daniel Auteuil, before a stranger won – the Sarajevo born director, one of just four winning the Cannes festival’s Palme d’Or…  twice.
  10. Samuel Le Bihan, Total western, France, 2000.    Gérard had not enjoyed much of Eric Rochant’s previous “exercise in style,” Anna Oz, but was keen to try another. He was, however, tied to (the far superior) Le gout des autres.
  11. Gérard Depardieu, Vidocq, France, 2001.     He was contacted for not one but two rival productions about the first French policeman. Lanvin has never attended the Cesar awards in Paris and although  he won two, he never collected them. “I don’t like the notion of Best Something. These prizes do no good, simply create jealousy in a job already full of it.” 
  12. Philippe Torreton, Félix et Lola, France, 2001.    Auteur Patrice Leconte wrote itfor one of his ’83 stars and Sandrine Bonnaire. Over dinner, they both agreed on what was wrong- “you wrote this for the us of 15 years ago.”“They were right,” reportedLeconte. “Actors usually are. They invariably have a more lucid and pertinent vision of my projects than I do!” The public’s opinion was worse – with a mere 64,000 tickets sold in France, it was the biggest of his flops.
  13. Gilbert Melki, Vendeur, France, 2015.    Lanvin surprisingly quit a week before shooting started. Melki (from the La verité si je me! franchise) was a superb sub. “My reference was Cate Blanchett in Blue Jasmine. Both roles contain that flamboyance which helps them find serenity in their chaos.”



 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  13