Best French Actress in a Leading Role 1950-1959

Les 7 meilleures interprétations d'actrices françaises ou étrangères, par années (1950-1959), ayant joué dans des films majoritairement français.
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1.
“ 1950 La Marie du port de Marcel Carné ” - guillaume836076
 
2.
“ 1950 Orphée de Jean Cocteau
Best French Actress 1950 ” - guillaume836076
 
3.
Suzy Delair
Prototype of the sexy cheeky French lady, Suzy Delair was discovered by Henri-Georges Clouzot, who became her companion and gave her two memorable roles : Mila Malou, inspector Wens' unbearable girlfriend in two films, The Last One of the Six, which he wrote, and The Murderer Lives at Number 21, which he penned and directed; and the mythical one of Jenny Lamour...
“ 1950 Lady Paname de Henri Jeanson ” - guillaume836076
 
4.
“ 1950 Un homme marche dans la ville de Marcello Pagliero ” - guillaume836076
 
5.
Claude Nollier
Actress, Moulin Rouge
An excellent actress, Claude Nollier remains too little known. Maybe because she made few films, but isn't quality better than quantity ? Whatever the truth, none of her appearances, whether an important movie like John Huston's Moulin Rouge or an artistic flop such as Les trafiquants de la mer, leaves a normal viewer indifferent...
“ 1950 Justice est faite d'André Cayatte ” - guillaume836076
 
6.
“ 1950 Dieu a besoin des hommes de Jean Delannoy ” - guillaume836076
 
7.
Simone Signoret
Actress, Diabolique
The face of Simone Signoret on the Paris Metro movie posters in March 1982 looked even older than her 61 years. She was still a box office draw, but the film, L'étoile du Nord, would be her last theatrical release. She played the landlady. Signoret had a long film apprenticeship during World War II, mostly as an extra and occasionally getting to speak a single line...
“ 1950 Manèges d'Yves Allégret ” - guillaume836076
 
8.
Danielle Darrieux
Actress, Persepolis
Danielle Darrieux was born in 1917 in Bordeaux, France, but raised in Paris. She was only 14 when she auditioned for a secondary role in Le bal: she got the part, and the producer offered her a five-year contract. She had her first romantic lead in La crise est finie and scored an international...
“ 1951 La Maison Bonnadieu de Carlo-Rim ” - guillaume836076
 
9.
“ 1951 Sans laisser d'adresse de Jean-Paul Le Chanois ” - guillaume836076
 
10.
“ 1951 Olivia de Jacqueline Audry
Best French Actress 1951 ” - guillaume836076
 
11.
“ 1951 Le Garçon sauvage de Jean Delannoy ” - guillaume836076
 
12.
“ 1951 L'Auberge rouge de Claude Autant-Lara ” - guillaume836076
 
13.
Simone Simon
Actress, Cat People
Diminutive, fiery-tempered Simone Simon was born in France, but spent much of her early childhood in Madagascar, where her father managed a graphite mine. Her schooling was somewhat unsettled, her family moving from city to city (Berlin, Budapest, Turin) before finally establishing themselves in Paris in 1930...
“ 1951 Olivia de Jacqueline Audry ” - guillaume836076
 
14.
Anne Vernon
Gallic Actress Anne Vernon, who was born Edith Antoinette Alexandrine Vignaud in Saint-Denis, France, on January 24, 1925, is not well known outside of Europe. Following graduation from the Paris Ecole des Beaux Arts, she found work as a model and apprenticed with an advertising designer. Developing an interest in acting...
“ 1951 Edouard et Caroline de Jacques Becker ” - guillaume836076
 
15.
“ 1952 Le Fruit défendu de Henri Verneuil ” - guillaume836076
 
16.
Danielle Darrieux
Actress, Persepolis
Danielle Darrieux was born in 1917 in Bordeaux, France, but raised in Paris. She was only 14 when she auditioned for a secondary role in Le bal: she got the part, and the producer offered her a five-year contract. She had her first romantic lead in La crise est finie and scored an international...
“ 1952 La Vérité sur Bébé Donge de Henri Decoin ” - guillaume836076
 
17.
“ 1952 La P... respectueuse de Marcello Pagliero ” - guillaume836076
 
18.
Gina Lollobrigida
Gina Lollobrigida was born on July 4, 1927 in Subiaco, Italy. Destined to be called "The Most Beautiful Woman in the World", Gina possibly had St. Brigid as part of her surname. She was the daughter of a furniture manufacturer, and grew up in the pictorial mountain village. The young Gina did some modeling and...
“ 1952 Fanfan la Tulipe de Christian-Jaque ” - guillaume836076
 
19.
Dany Robin
Actress, Topaz
This pert, delicate-looking French dish with the piled-high blonde hairdo was a one-time threat to the sexy, kittenish pedestal 'Brigitte Bardot' stood on during the 1950s. Born on April 4, 1927, the lithe and luscious Dany Robin trained as a ballerina as a child and eventually made her way to the Opera de Paris...
“ 1952 La Fête à Henriette de Julien Duvivier ” - guillaume836076
 
20.
“ 1952 L'Homme de ma vie de Guy Lefranc ” - guillaume836076
 
21.
Simone Signoret
Actress, Diabolique
The face of Simone Signoret on the Paris Metro movie posters in March 1982 looked even older than her 61 years. She was still a box office draw, but the film, L'étoile du Nord, would be her last theatrical release. She played the landlady. Signoret had a long film apprenticeship during World War II, mostly as an extra and occasionally getting to speak a single line...
“ 1952 Casque d'or de Jacques Becker
Best French Actress 1952 ” - guillaume836076
 
22.
Danielle Darrieux
Actress, Persepolis
Danielle Darrieux was born in 1917 in Bordeaux, France, but raised in Paris. She was only 14 when she auditioned for a secondary role in Le bal: she got the part, and the producer offered her a five-year contract. She had her first romantic lead in La crise est finie and scored an international...
“ 1953 Madame de... de Max Ophüls
Best French Actress 1953 ” - guillaume836076
 
23.
Anna Magnani
Anna Magnani was born in Rome, Italy (not in Egypt, as some biographies claim), on March 7, 1908. She was the illegitimate child of Marina Magnani and an unknown father, often said to be from Alexandria, Egypt, but whom Anna herself claimed was from the Calabria region of Italy although she never knew his name...
“ 1953 Le Carrosse d'or de Jean Renoir ” - guillaume836076
 
24.
Michèle Morgan
A classic beauty, blonde French actress Michèle Morgan has been one of her country's most popular leading ladies for over five decades. Born in 1920, she studied acting under René Simon and began her career at 15 working as a film extra to pay for drama classes. The young actress soon caught the eye of director 'Marc Allegret' who cast her in Heart of Paris...
“ 1953 Les Orgueilleux d'Yves Allégret ” - guillaume836076
 
25.
“ 1953 Manon des Sources de Marcel Pagnol ” - guillaume836076
 
26.
“ 1953 Horizons sans fin de Jean Dréville ” - guillaume836076
 
27.
Micheline Presle
Dark-haired, Paris-born Micheline Presle (better known in the States as Micheline Prelle) was the daughter of a businessman and took acting classes as a teen. She was discovered by Georg Wilhelm Pabst and cast in Girls in Distress (Young Girls in Distress) and Four Flights to Love in which she played a dual role...
“ 1953 La Dame aux camélias de Raymond Bernard ” - guillaume836076
 
28.
Simone Signoret
Actress, Diabolique
The face of Simone Signoret on the Paris Metro movie posters in March 1982 looked even older than her 61 years. She was still a box office draw, but the film, L'étoile du Nord, would be her last theatrical release. She played the landlady. Signoret had a long film apprenticeship during World War II, mostly as an extra and occasionally getting to speak a single line...
“ 1953 Thérèse Raquin de Marcel Carné ” - guillaume836076
 
29.
Arletty
On leaving school, Arletty worked in a factory before becoming a model. She made her music-hall debut in 1918 and continued to appear on the stage until the early 1930's. Arletty rarely received top billing although she outshone the lead actors in most of her films, notably the popular classics Hotel du Nord and Le Jour se Leve...
“ 1954 Huis clos de Jacqueline Audry ” - guillaume836076
 
30.
Danielle Darrieux
Actress, Persepolis
Danielle Darrieux was born in 1917 in Bordeaux, France, but raised in Paris. She was only 14 when she auditioned for a secondary role in Le bal: she got the part, and the producer offered her a five-year contract. She had her first romantic lead in La crise est finie and scored an international...
“ 1954 Le Rouge et le noir de Claude Autant-Lara
Best French Actress 1954 ” - guillaume836076
 
31.
“ 1954 Le Guérisseur d'Yves Ciampi ” - guillaume836076
 
32.
“ 1954 Le Blé en herbe de Claude Autant-Lara ” - guillaume836076
 
33.
Jeanne Moreau
Actress, Jules and Jim
When people gave Louis Malle credit for making a star of Jeanne Moreau in Elevator to the Gallows immediately followed by The Lovers, he would point out that Moreau by that time had already been "recognized as the prime stage actress of her generation." She had made it to the Comédie Française in her 20s...
“ 1954 La Reine Margot de Jean Dréville ” - guillaume836076
 
34.
Micheline Presle
Dark-haired, Paris-born Micheline Presle (better known in the States as Micheline Prelle) was the daughter of a businessman and took acting classes as a teen. She was discovered by Georg Wilhelm Pabst and cast in Girls in Distress (Young Girls in Distress) and Four Flights to Love in which she played a dual role...
“ 1954 L'amour d'une femme de Jean Grémillon ” - guillaume836076
 
35.
“ 1954 Huis clos de Jacqueline Audry ” - guillaume836076
 
36.
Anouk Aimée
Actress,
She is the daughter of the actress Geneviève Sorya. In 1948 she played the part of Juliette in Les amants de Vérone. In the following years (fifties and beginning sixties) she made various films (e.g. Modigliani of Montparnasse and La Dolce Vita) but had only with Lola of Jacques Demy and A Man and a Woman of Claude Lelouch major success...
“ 1955 Les Mauvaises rencontres d'Alexandre Astruc ” - guillaume836076
 
37.
“ 1955 French Cancan de Jean Renoir ” - guillaume836076
 
38.
Martine Carol
Actress, Lola Montès
France's major sex siren of the early 50s, this lesser-remembered post-war French pastry pre-dated bombshell Brigitte Bardot by a few years but her brief reign did not compare and has not lived up to the Bardot era. The cult mystique is not there even after dying mysteriously and relatively young. Martine was born Marie-Louise Mourer on May 16...
“ 1955 Lola Montès de Max Ophüls
Best French Actress 1955 ” - guillaume836076
 
39.
Véra Clouzot
Actress, Diabolique
Married to the film-maker Henri-Georges Clouzot, Vera was directed by her husband in her first film the 1953 thriller The Wages of Fear, in which she appeared alongside Charles Vanel and Yves Montand. In a short film career Clouzot only performed in films directed by Henri-Georges, the most famous of which was undoubtedly the 1955 thriller Diabolique...
“ 1955 Les Diaboliques de Henri-Georges Clouzot ” - guillaume836076
 
40.
Danielle Darrieux
Actress, Persepolis
Danielle Darrieux was born in 1917 in Bordeaux, France, but raised in Paris. She was only 14 when she auditioned for a secondary role in Le bal: she got the part, and the producer offered her a five-year contract. She had her first romantic lead in La crise est finie and scored an international...
“ 1955 L'amant de Lady Chatterley de Marc Allégret ” - guillaume836076
 
41.
Michèle Morgan
A classic beauty, blonde French actress Michèle Morgan has been one of her country's most popular leading ladies for over five decades. Born in 1920, she studied acting under René Simon and began her career at 15 working as a film extra to pay for drama classes. The young actress soon caught the eye of director 'Marc Allegret' who cast her in Heart of Paris...
“ 1955 Les Grandes manoeuvres de René Clair ” - guillaume836076
 
42.
Simone Signoret
Actress, Diabolique
The face of Simone Signoret on the Paris Metro movie posters in March 1982 looked even older than her 61 years. She was still a box office draw, but the film, L'étoile du Nord, would be her last theatrical release. She played the landlady. Signoret had a long film apprenticeship during World War II, mostly as an extra and occasionally getting to speak a single line...
“ 1955 Les Diaboliques de Henri-Georges Clouzot ” - guillaume836076
 
43.
“ 1956 Des gens sans importance de Henri Verneuil ” - guillaume836076
 
44.
“ 1956 Cela s'appelle l'aurore de Luis Bunuel ” - guillaume836076
 
45.
“ 1956 Voici le temps des assassins de Julien Duvivier ” - guillaume836076
 
46.
Gina Lollobrigida
Gina Lollobrigida was born on July 4, 1927 in Subiaco, Italy. Destined to be called "The Most Beautiful Woman in the World", Gina possibly had St. Brigid as part of her surname. She was the daughter of a furniture manufacturer, and grew up in the pictorial mountain village. The young Gina did some modeling and...
“ 1956 Notre Dame de Paris de Jean Delannoy ” - guillaume836076
 
47.
Maria Schell
Actress, Superman
Maria Schell studied in a religious institution in Colmar (Haut-Rhin, France). She received a dramatic training in Zurich, Switzerland. To pay her studies, she was a secretary there. Besides being a film star; Maria appeared in plays in Zurich, Basel, in Vienna (Josefstad Theater), Berlin, Munich (Kammerspiel Theater)...
“ 1956 Gervaise de René Clément
Best French Actress 1956 ” - guillaume836076
 
48.
Simone Signoret
Actress, Diabolique
The face of Simone Signoret on the Paris Metro movie posters in March 1982 looked even older than her 61 years. She was still a box office draw, but the film, L'étoile du Nord, would be her last theatrical release. She played the landlady. Signoret had a long film apprenticeship during World War II, mostly as an extra and occasionally getting to speak a single line...
“ 1956 La Mort en ce jardin de Luis Bunuel ” - guillaume836076
 
49.
Marina Vlady
She had the makings of a blonde bombshell and could have ended up in film history annals as merely a second-rate Brigitte Bardot, but sex symbol Marina Vlady proved she was capable of much more. In her prime she was nominated for a Golden Globe and won a "Best Actress" award at the 1963 Cannes Film...
“ 1956 La Sorcière d'André Michel ” - guillaume836076
 
50.
“ 1957 Sait-on jamais ? de Roger Vadim
Best French Actress 1957 ” - guillaume836076
 
51.
Dany Carrel
Dany Carrel was born Yvonne Suzanne Chazelles du Chaxel on September 20, 1932 in Tourane, Annam, French Indochina. The illegitimate daughter of a French expatriate father and a Vietnamese mother, Carrel initially grew up in Indochina prior to be taken away at age three from her biological mother by the wife of her father and sent to France...
“ 1957 Pot-Bouille de Julien Duvivier ” - guillaume836076
 
52.
Melina Mercouri
Melina Mercouri was born in Athens, Greece on October 18, 1920. An early woman activist, she was elected to the Greek Parliament in 1977. Later Miss Mercouri was to become the first woman to hold a Senior cabinet post "Minister of Culture" in the Greek government. In 1971 she wrote her autobiography...
“ 1957 Celui qui doit mourir de Jules Dassin ” - guillaume836076
 
53.
Michèle Morgan
A classic beauty, blonde French actress Michèle Morgan has been one of her country's most popular leading ladies for over five decades. Born in 1920, she studied acting under René Simon and began her career at 15 working as a film extra to pay for drama classes. The young actress soon caught the eye of director 'Marc Allegret' who cast her in Heart of Paris...
“ 1957 Retour de manivelle de Denys de La Patellière ” - guillaume836076
 
54.
Micheline Presle
Dark-haired, Paris-born Micheline Presle (better known in the States as Micheline Prelle) was the daughter of a businessman and took acting classes as a teen. She was discovered by Georg Wilhelm Pabst and cast in Girls in Distress (Young Girls in Distress) and Four Flights to Love in which she played a dual role...
“ 1957 Les Louves de Luis Saslavsky ” - guillaume836076
 
55.
“ 1957 Les Louves de Luis Saslavsky ” - guillaume836076
 
56.
Simone Signoret
Actress, Diabolique
The face of Simone Signoret on the Paris Metro movie posters in March 1982 looked even older than her 61 years. She was still a box office draw, but the film, L'étoile du Nord, would be her last theatrical release. She played the landlady. Signoret had a long film apprenticeship during World War II, mostly as an extra and occasionally getting to speak a single line...
“ 1957 Les Sorcières de Salem de Raymond Rouleau ” - guillaume836076
 
57.
Anouk Aimée
Actress,
She is the daughter of the actress Geneviève Sorya. In 1948 she played the part of Juliette in Les amants de Vérone. In the following years (fifties and beginning sixties) she made various films (e.g. Modigliani of Montparnasse and La Dolce Vita) but had only with Lola of Jacques Demy and A Man and a Woman of Claude Lelouch major success...
“ 1958 Montparnasse 19 de Jacques Becker ” - guillaume836076
 
58.
“ 1958 La Chatte de Henri Decoin ” - guillaume836076
 
59.
Brigitte Bardot
Actress, Contempt
Brigitte Bardot was born on September 28, 1934 in Paris, France. Her father had an engineering degree and worked with his father in the family business. Brigitte's mother encouraged her daughter to take up music and dance, and she proved to be very adept at it. By the time she was 15, Brigitte was trying a modeling career...
“ 1958 En cas de malheur de Claude Autant-Lara ” - guillaume836076
 
60.
Jeanne Moreau
Actress, Jules and Jim
When people gave Louis Malle credit for making a star of Jeanne Moreau in Elevator to the Gallows immediately followed by The Lovers, he would point out that Moreau by that time had already been "recognized as the prime stage actress of her generation." She had made it to the Comédie Française in her 20s...
“ 1958 Ascenseur pour l'échafaud de Louis Malle
Best French Actress 1958

1958 Les Amants de Louis Malle ” - guillaume836076
 
61.
Michèle Morgan
A classic beauty, blonde French actress Michèle Morgan has been one of her country's most popular leading ladies for over five decades. Born in 1920, she studied acting under René Simon and began her career at 15 working as a film extra to pay for drama classes. The young actress soon caught the eye of director 'Marc Allegret' who cast her in Heart of Paris...
“ 1958 Le Miroir à deux faces d'André Cayatte ” - guillaume836076
 
62.
Maria Schell
Actress, Superman
Maria Schell studied in a religious institution in Colmar (Haut-Rhin, France). She received a dramatic training in Zurich, Switzerland. To pay her studies, she was a secretary there. Besides being a film star; Maria appeared in plays in Zurich, Basel, in Vienna (Josefstad Theater), Berlin, Munich (Kammerspiel Theater)...
“ 1958 Une vie d'Alexandre Astruc ” - guillaume836076
 
63.
Anouk Aimée
Actress,
She is the daughter of the actress Geneviève Sorya. In 1948 she played the part of Juliette in Les amants de Vérone. In the following years (fifties and beginning sixties) she made various films (e.g. Modigliani of Montparnasse and La Dolce Vita) but had only with Lola of Jacques Demy and A Man and a Woman of Claude Lelouch major success...
“ 1959 La Tête contre les murs de Georges Franju ” - guillaume836076
 
64.
Danielle Darrieux
Actress, Persepolis
Danielle Darrieux was born in 1917 in Bordeaux, France, but raised in Paris. She was only 14 when she auditioned for a secondary role in Le bal: she got the part, and the producer offered her a five-year contract. She had her first romantic lead in La crise est finie and scored an international...
“ 1959 Marie-Octobre de Julien Duvivier ” - guillaume836076
 
65.
“ 1959 A double tour de Claude Chabrol ” - guillaume836076
 
66.
Sandra Milo
Actress,
During the 1950s and 1960s bosomy, scintillating, dark-haired Tunisian leading lady Sandra Milo played bored patricians, manipulative mistresses and other enticing ladies of questionable morals with typical sensuous flare in scores of Italian and French productions. Born Elena Liliana Greco in Tunis in 1935...
“ 1959 Un témoin dans la ville d'Edouard Molinaro ” - guillaume836076
 
67.
Jeanne Moreau
Actress, Jules and Jim
When people gave Louis Malle credit for making a star of Jeanne Moreau in Elevator to the Gallows immediately followed by The Lovers, he would point out that Moreau by that time had already been "recognized as the prime stage actress of her generation." She had made it to the Comédie Française in her 20s...
“ 1959 Les Liaisons dangereuses de Roger Vadim ” - guillaume836076
 
68.
Emmanuelle Riva
Actress, Amour
An only child, Emmanuelle was born Paulette Germaine Riva in Cheniménil, but eventually grew up in Remiremont. She is the daughter of Jeanne Fernande (Nourdin), a seamstress, and René Alfred Riva, a sign writer. Her paternal grandfather was Italian. She has dreamed of becoming an actress since she was six...
“ 1959 Hiroshima mon amour d'Alain Resnais
Best French Actress 1959 ” - guillaume836076
 
69.
Marina Vlady
She had the makings of a blonde bombshell and could have ended up in film history annals as merely a second-rate Brigitte Bardot, but sex symbol Marina Vlady proved she was capable of much more. In her prime she was nominated for a Golden Globe and won a "Best Actress" award at the 1963 Cannes Film...
“ 1959 Toi, le venin de Robert Hossein ” - guillaume836076