Jacques Dutronc

  1. Jean Desailly, La Peau douce, France, 19 64.     Theatre star Desailly did not like the film, the role, the subject – “or me,” said French realisateur François Truffaut. And vice-versa. According to his editor Claudine Bouche, Truffaut detested Desailly for being physically maladroit. Only reason he didn’t book Dutronc, was that the singer was tall; Truffaut  hated  directing actors taller than he was.
  2. Remy  Pascal,Félicité,  France, 1978.     Actor Christine Pascal’s directing debut. She wanted Dutronc  to play her brother –  to whom the film was dedicated.
  3. Richard Bohringer, Diva,  France,  1980.        The role: Gorodish who saved the coursier hero from gangsters. The excuse: “I never got the scenario,” said Dutronc. The truth: His wife, singer  Françoise Hardy, found it while clearing out their basement when moving house.
  4. Gérard Depardieu, Loulou, France, 1980.     Obnoxious realisateur Maurice Pialat’s co-scenarist, editor and lover Arlette Langmann (Claude Berri’s sister) said a young Jean Gabin was required. And that is exactly Dutronc. Opposite Isabelle Huppert?  Non! He  voted instead for two other films with her: Retour à la bien-aimée by stage director Jean François Adam and Jean-Luc Godard’s Sauve qui peut (la vie). He later starred in the  auteur’spenultimate film, Van Gogh,  1991.
  5. Paul Freeman, Raiders of the Lost Ark, 1981.
  6. Gérard Klein, La Passante de Sans-Souci, France,  1981.     Dutronc had an affair with Romy Schneider  during L’important c’est d’aimer in 1974. –  and he refused a reprise.  Not very gentlemanly, but maybe he was right. Romy’s personal  project proved  her last film: she was dead a month after the premiere from too much suffering (and booze) over broken marriage and affairs and the  horrible, accidental death of her son, David, 14 – impaled on an iron fence that he was climbing  in July 1981.
  7. Jean-Louis Trintignant, Eaux profondes, France,1981.   alisateurMichel Deville first planned it with Cassel –  he had, after all, suggested filming the Patricia Highsmith novel while they made Le  Mouton enragé, in 1974.  Their version never took off.  When Deville tried a second time, he first contacted his other Mouton star, Trintignantwho he had also directed in the French dubbing of Kubrick’s The Shining. (JLT also dubbed HAL in 2001).  Now he was a Machiavellian husband, killing any guys getting too close to his wife, Isabelle Huppert. A twisted, disquieting character – which pleased JLT.  Enormously. “Oh, but Deville asked Jacques Dutronc first,” revealed JLT, adding with  his customary auto-derision: “And he would have been better.” Doubtful. Extremely doubtful. 
  8. Thierry Rode, Je vous salue Marie, France-Switzerland, 1984.    After considering Jean Marais, 71, and philosopher Bernard-Henri Levy, 35, for Joseph in his updating of Mary’s virginal pregnancy,  bilious realisateur Jean-Luc Godard tested the singer turned good cinema actor.  Too good for Godard, who never really knew  how to deal with actors. And so, Dutronc couldn’t save Godard’s botched comeback, Sauve qui peu (la vie), 1979.
  9. Tchéky Karyo, L’amour braque, France, 1984. Polish (now Ukrainian) born director Andrzej Zulawski wanted wanted Isabelle Adjani, Jacques Dutronc and Francis Huster. He got Sophie Marceau, Karyo and Huster…  and Dutronc, in 1988, for Mes nuits sont pklus belles que vos jours(My Nights Are More Beautiful Than Your Days) with Marceau. The same mixture. Indeed, Zulawski is so over-the-top that he makes Ken Russell seem a Disney director.
  10. Sam Neill, Bis ans Ende de Wdelt/Until The End of  the World, 1991.     As with Raiders, he felt his English was not  up  to  it.  Unfortunately  Wim Wenders’ lover, Solveig Dommartin, was not as honest.  

  11. Nathalie Baye, Le Petit Lieutenant, France,  2004.   For his appointment  with actor-auteur Xavier Beauvois, Dutronc arrived somewhat pissed.  And passed. Instead of looking for another guy, Beauvois immediately turned his veteran police  commandant  into a woman.  Result: Nathalie’s second César.
  12. Johnny Hallyday, Salaud, on t’aime, France, 2013   Claude Lelouch was thinking of Dutronc or Alain Delon, when the veteran rocker called out of the blue:   “So when we do we start our fim?”   In 2014, Dutronc joined Hallyday and his eventual co-star, the singer-cum-actor  Eddy Mitchell,  in Sinatra  Clan style  concerts in France.

 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Usual occupation: SingerCasting Calls:  12