Tchéky Karyo

  1. Frédéric Andréi, Diva, France, 1980.  For his first feature’s hero, Jean-Jacques Beineix wanted an unknown. (That way the director gets all the praise). Dominique Besnehard, soon to be Europe’s #1 casting director, suggested Christophe(r) Lambert (a friend for life), Anconina (not so much).  The also-rans were: Karyo, Richard Berry, Jean-Paul Comart (ex-Connart), Christophe Malavoy (“couldn’t take my  eyes off him,” when studying together at La Rue Blanche (drama school),”  cartoonist Sempé’s son, Nicolas.  And Pagny, the future singing star, found working in  the cloakrooms of the Broad gay nightclub.  JJB thought him perfect, his producteur Irène Silberman thought him too vulgaire.  “Rubbish,” said Besnehard, “look at him – the young Jean Gabin!”
  2. François Cluzet, Chocolat, France-West Germany-Cameroon, 1988. One French company dropping out of the budget mix meant another delay for Claire Denis’ directing debut – and so she lost Karyo toJean-Jacques Annaud’s L’Ours.
  3. Miki Manojlovic, Artemisia, France, 1997.An early choice of Agnes Merlet forpainter, teacher and alleged rapist Agostino Tassi. Karyo tested with the titular star Valentina Cervi.
  4. Jean-Luc Bideau,RPM, 1997.Tarantino compadre Roger Avary wrote the script – for Karyo,Daniel Auteuil,Yun-Fat Chow, Matt Dillon, Nastassja Kinski, Dolph Lundgren, Vanessa Paradis, Tom Savini, Terence Stamp – and Avary’s Killing Zoe stars: Jean-Hugues Anglade andEric Stoltz.Hethen decided against directing. The producer hired Ian Sharp“and the two guys who did Grumpier Old Men [!?!] to rewrite my script.”Actually, Donald Cammell (using the pseudonym Franklin Brauner), helped out in the year before he died.Avary removed his name from the ensuing mess.

 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  4