Tormented Betty Blue director Jean-Jacques Beineix dies

PARIS (AFP) – Oscar-nominated movie director Jean-Jacques Beineix, who has died aged 75, survived a panning by French critics to make Betty Blue, one in every of most iconic movies of the Nineteen Eighties.

Beineix died this week after an extended sickness at his house in Paris, his household confirmed to AFP.

The filmmaker – who tended to take criticism to coronary heart – by no means forgot the drubbing he took for his first movie Diva in 1981, which solely grew to become successful in France after it had been heaped with prizes overseas.

Many years later Beineix – a pioneer of the French “cinema du look” that was later embraced by Luc Besson (The Fifth Component) – was nonetheless smarting from being dismissed for his “ad-man’s aesthetic” of favouring fashion over story.

“Nobody is a prophet in their very own land,” stated Beineix, who educated as a physician earlier than making his identify with a placing tv public well being warning about Aids.

His second movie The Moon In The Gutter, starring Gerard Depardieu and Nastassja Kinski, additionally obtained a important kicking, with Beineix saying he “by no means obtained over” being booed at its premiere on the Cannes movie competition in 1983.

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“The damage is there. The truth that I’m completed at present began there,” he advised French radio in 2020.

Damage

Regardless of Betty Blue’s deluge of Oscar, Golden Globe and Bafta nominations, French critics referred to as it pretentious and boring.

Nonetheless, the poster that includes actress Beatrice Dalle went on to adorn thousands and thousands of bedrooms internationally.

“I really like you,” Dalle wrote in a message to Beineix on her Instagram web page on Friday (Jan 14), including that the filming had been “one of the stunning pages of my life”.

But removed from basking within the movie’s glory, the film’s success frightened the director on the time.

“It might change your life perpetually – in good methods and in lots of dangerous,” he stated.

Beineix nonetheless took the plunge when the large Hollywood studios got here knocking.

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“I made a decision to stroll throughout the minefield… to have dinner with the satan,” he later stated.

However he turned down large alternatives within the Nineties – together with the prospect to direct The Avengers, Alien Resurrection and The Identify Of The Rose.

And his profession by no means once more hit the heady heights of these early years.

Montand’s demise

Beineix was additionally traumatised by the demise of Yves Montand, the star of his The Island Of Pachyderms (1992), simply days after the movie wrapped.

The director felt some blamed him for the demise of the actor and singer, a nationwide treasure in France.

“He died two days after we did reshoots mockingly of the scene wherein he dies.”

Some made “a connection between his demise and the movie, virtually implying that the movie had killed him,” he added.

“Yves wasn’t there to defend me, or the movie, so it was very robust.”

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‘Dreamed of affection’

Born on Oct 8, 1946 in Paris, Beineix first made his mark in promoting earlier than taking a pay reduce to develop into an assistant director for French stalwarts Claude Berri, Jean Becker and Claude Zidi.

His first function, the psychological thriller Diva a few younger postman obsessive about an opera diva, gained 4 Cesars – the French equal of the Oscars – and is now thought of a cult traditional.

An knowledgeable on Japanese manga, Beineix dreamed that Asian filmmakers would make widespread trigger with Europe to supply an alternative choice to Hollywood’s “industrial machine”.

Though he continued to make documentaries, Beineix started to write down, returning to the theme of his best success – Betty Blue – in his debut novel, Toboggan.

The 2020 work had echoes of the movie, with an unbalanced younger girl who has a passionate affair with a would-be author.

“I dreamed of affection earlier than anything,” he stated.

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