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Annie Girardot (1931-2011)

 

  1. Dany Robin, La française et l'amour, France-Italy, 1960.    For his sketch, l’Adultère, prodigious dialoguist-turned-auteur Michel Audiard (129 scripts in 36 years) wanted Daniel Gelin as the lover of Annie Girardot as Henri Vidal’s wife. Vidal’s untimely death (at 40) changed all of that. Belmondo took over with Dany Robin and Paul Meurisse. Girardot stayed aboard - in the next stage, Christian-Jacque’s Le Divorce.
  2. Michèle Mercier, L'Aine des Ferchaux, 1962. When Alain Delon and Romy Schneider left the project, the next version (by realisateur Jean-Pierre Melville) quickly attracted Belmondo, but no so easily a leading lady.
  3. Anouk Aimée, Un homme et une femme, France, 1966. Everyone was in Deauville ready to start when Anouk icily announced: "I'm not getting in any boat." She expected such a scene to be faked in the studio, a la Fellini. Not with flashy director Claude Lelouch. Stubbornly, he started calling other actresses - but few could turn up at 24 hours notice, including Girardot and a star since the days when Lelouch, at 19, was a gofer on her L'Homme aux cles d’or. Whether Anouk found out about the calls to not, she agreed to test the idea of being in a small boat... and sailed through it. Lelouch kept Girardot for his next, Vivre pour vivre, 1967 - when she replaced Jeanne Moreau and started an affair with Lelouch.
  4. Lisa Gastoni, Grazie Tia, Italy, 1968. One of Annie's regrets, refusing Savatore Samperi's big hit. Italy was the French star's second home - and supplied some of her best finest roles - after she wed her Rocco And His Brothers partner, Renato Salvatori, in 1962.
  5. Léa Massari, Les Choses de la vie (US: These Things Happen), France-Italy-Switzerland, 1969. First off, the supreme realisateur Claude Sautet considered Girardot and Yves Montand (Claude Lelouch’s Colomb couple in Vivre pour vivre) as the Bérard couple in the first of his classic treasures. (Candice Bergen came between the Colombs, Romy Schneider between the Bérards).
  6. Geraldine Chaplin, Sur un arbre perché, France, 1971. Realisateur Serge Korber planned on a second screen teaming of Girardot and Yves Montand stuck in a crashed car, hanging by a branch above a ravine. Louis de Funès heard about it when making Korber’s farce, l'Homme orchestre and said: “Do it with me. We can rewrite it as a comedy.”  
  7. Suzanne Flon, Le silencieux (US: The Silent One), France-Italy, 1972. Now Audiard had no time to polish the espionage drama for Yves Montand and Giradot. He passed it on to realisateur Claude Pinoteau - who selected Lino Ventura and Flon. (Girardot made nine Audiard movies).
  8. Romy Schneider, Cesar et Rosalie, France, 1972.    BB-Ventura-Belmondo became BB-Gassman-Belmondo, then Deneuve-Montand-Sami Frey.  But Catherine was pregnant. Marlene Jobert pleaded for it, Annie Giradcot wanted it. Finally, gloriously, Romy was Rosalie in Claude Sautet’s greatest box-office triumph, his most cherished work for the French public. BB and Ventura made Boulevard du rhum, 1971.
  9. Bulle Ogier, Marriage, France, 1974     Originally, the couple wed by realisateur Claude Lelouch was Brel (from L’aventure, c’est l’aventure, 1971) and their one-time lover, Annie Girardot (from Vivre pour vivre, 1967). The Belgian singer, helas, had been diagnosed with lung cancer and Annie didn’t really fit with Rufus while Ogier, the intellectuals’ darling, “needed,” said Lelouch, “a film like Mariage and a director like, me.” Not so much.

 

 





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