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Louis Jourdan Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trade Mark (1) | Trivia (21) | Personal Quotes (8)

Overview (4)

Date of Birth 19 June 1921Marseille, Bouches-du-Rhône, France
Date of Death 14 February 2015Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA
Birth NameLouis Robert Gendre
Height 5' 11" (1.8 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Louis Jourdan was born Louis Robert Gendre in Marseille, France, to Yvonne (née Jourdan) and Henry Gendre, a hotel owner. He was educated in France, Britain, and Turkey. He trained as an actor with René Simon at the École Dramatique. He debuted on-screen in 1939, going on to play cultivated, polished, dashing lead roles in a number of French romantic comedies and dramas. During World War II, after his father was arrested by the Gestapo, Louis and his two brothers joined the French underground; his film career came to a halt when he refused to act in Nazi propaganda films. In 1948, David O. Selznick invited him to Hollywood to appear in The Paradine Case (1947); he remained in the USA and went on to star in a number of Hollywood films. After 1953, he appeared in international productions and, in 1958, appeared in Gigi (1958), his best-known film by American audiences. His career was hampered by the limitations of the roles he was offered, most of which featured him as an old-fashioned Continental lover.

Jourdan died at his home in Beverly Hills, California, in 2015. He was 93.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Ohad Rosen <yoav_ro@netvision.net.il>

Spouse (1)

Berthe 'Quique' Frederique Takar (11 March 1946 - 2014) (her death) (1 child)

Trade Mark (1)

Often played dashing and charming characters

Trivia (21)

His son, Louis Henry, committed suicide by drug overdose in 1981.
He was a friend of Albert R. Broccoli
Part of his French Resistance work was to help publish and distribute newspapers for the Underground.
Considered the best player in Darryl F. Zanuck's famous croquet circle.
He has two stars on the "Hollywood Walk of Fame".
Older brother of director Pierre Jourdan.
Played the Maurice Chevalier role in "Gigi" on stage at the age of 63. Chevalier was 70 and frail when he did the movie Gigi (1958).
It was he who found the body of his only child, Louis Henry, 29, in his Beverly Hills home. His son had suffered from depression and had apparently taken an overdose of drugs. The police labeled it a suicide, even though it may have been an accidental overdose.
His wife is called 'Quique'. They were childhood sweethearts.
He grew up in the south of France with 2 brothers. Parents Yvonne Jourdan and Henry Gendre managed a string of hotels in Cannes, Nice, and Marseilles. He perfected his English by speaking to tourists.
Doesn't watch his own films.
According to an 1985 news article, he reads Nietzsche and Schopenhauer.
Only son, Louis Henry George Jourdan, was born October 6, 1951.
He was nominated for a 1975 Joseph Jefferson Award for Best Guest Artist for his performance in the play, "13 Rue De L'Amour", at the Arlington Park Theatre in Chicago, Illinois.
Played Edmond Dantes in "The Story of the Count of Monte Cristo" (1961) and later played De Villefort in "The Count of Monte Cristo" (1975).
He is retired and living in Los Angeles, CA.
At the beginning of the 40's, he was engaged to Micheline Presle, whom he fist met during a holiday in St.Tropez in 1938. They were close to getting married at one point, but eventually broke up in a hard way. Jourdan took this so badly that, when he was reunited with Micheline in Twilight (1944), he refused to speak any word to her except for when they were in front of the camera. Micheline was initially irritated by this, but eventually ended up laughing at the whole thing.
His father was the manager of the Cannes Grand Hôtel during WW2.
In 2010, Jourdon received the 'French Legion of Honor.' The French Ambassador to the U.S presented the medal in Los Angeles, California.
Brother of assistant director Robert Gendre.
He appeared in two adaptations of Alexandre Dumas père's 1844 novel "The Count of Monte Cristo". He played the title character Edmond Dantès in The Story of the Count of Monte Cristo (1961) and his enemy Villefort in The Count of Monte-Cristo (1975).

Personal Quotes (8)

[Speaking of Gregory Peck] He can be funny, which is fortunate; otherwise such perfection would be unbearable.
I didn't want to be perpetually cooing in a lady's ear. There's not much satisfaction in it.
There are actors in this town who made important careers for a long, long period just by taking the parts that Cary Grant turned down.
I never see my movies. When they're on television I click them away. Hollywood created an image and I long ago reconciled myself with it. I was the French cliché.
I would rather be called a character actor than a star.
When one has been married over thirty years, of course it would be absurd not to admit there have been some difficulties, at some times. But the important thing is that we have weathered them.
I'm proud to be a Frenchman, but I resent the image people have of the stupid, continental charmer. Against that type of role I fight pitilessly.
Any actor who comes here with an accent is automatically put in roles as a lover. I didn't want to be perpetually cooing in a lady's ear.

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