One month before her 18th birthday, this blonde actress landed the title role in Otto Preminger's Saint Joan (1957) after a much-publicized contest involving some 18,000 hopefuls. The failure of that film and the only moderate success of her next, Bonjour tristesse (1958), combined to stall Seberg's career, until her role in Jean-Luc Godard's landmark feature, Breathless (1960), brought her renewed international attention. Seberg gave a memorable performance as a schizophrenic in the title role of Robert Rossen's Lilith (1964), costarring Warren Beatty. Her most famous film as a lead actress was the western-musical Paint Your Wagon (1969).
During this time Seberg became involved in anti-war politics and was the target of an undercover campaign by the FBI to discredit her because of her association with several members of the Black Panther party. Bad press and several personal problems nearly ruined her career, and she only acted in foreign films from then on. She was found dead under mysterious circumstances in a Paris suburb in September 1979, and her precise date of death remains unknown. She was 40 years old.
Seberg was survived by both of her parents, two younger siblings, three ex-husbands, and a 16-year-old son named Diego. On August 23, 1970, she gave birth to a daughter named Nina, who was the product of an extramarital affair she had with a college student named Carlos Navarra; Nina died two days after her birth as a result of Jean overdosing on sleeping pills during her pregnancy.
|Ahmed Hasni||(30 May 1979 - 30 August 1979) (her death)|
|Dennis Berry||(1972 - 1978) (divorced)|
|Romain Gary||(16 October 1962 - 1970) (divorced) 1 child|
|François Moreuil||(5 September 1958 - 1 June 1960) (divorced)|
Buried in the exclusive Montparnasse cemetery, Paris, France.
Her involvement with the Black Panther movement yielded the attention of the FBI, that spread the rumor about her pregnancy in 1970 being a child by Raymond Hewt, a Black Panther movement leader. Although Seberg initially claimed that Romain Gary was the father, she confessed that a Revolutionary student named Carlos Navarra was the father of her child. The incident may have contributed to her persistent depression over the years, and her decision to take her life in 1979.
Gave birth to her son Alexandre Diego Gary on July 17, 1962.
Although her husband Romain Gary acknowledged her daughter Nina as his own, during her pregnancy she confessed that she was actually the product of an affair (during a separation from Gary) with a revolutionary student named Carlos Navarra.
Gave birth to her daughter Nina Navarra (whose father is Carlos Navarra) on August 23, 1970. Nina died as a result of complications sustained from Jean overdosing on sleeping pills during her pregnancy, on 25 August 1970, two days after her birth.
On every subsequent anniversary of her daughter Nina's death, Jean attempted suicide. In 1978, she somehow survived an attempt, throwing herself under a train on the Paris Metro.
Rumors flew that Jean's suicide was masterminded by the FBI but it was never proven. Buried in the Montparnasse cemetery in Paris, France, her funeral was attended by such notables as Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir.
Committed suicide in the back seat of an automobile in a Paris suburb. Her body wasn't found until 11 days later.
Otto Preminger chose her to play Joan of Arc out of nearly 18,000 hopefuls.
Her second marriage to the 24-years-older Russian novelist Romain Gary was tempestuous and profoundly unhappy due to his obsessive, Svengali-like influence on her. Divorced in 1970 when she became pregnant by her lover Carlos Navarra, she committed suicide in 1979 while he took his own life by gunshot the very next year; however, Gary stated in his suicide note that Jean's suicide had nothing to do with his.
A musical, simply titled "Jean Seberg", based on her life premiered at the Royal National Theatre, London in 1983. It was written by Julian Barry with music by Marvin Hamlisch and lyrics by Christopher Adler.
After Faye Dunaway and Julie Andrews both turned it down, Kim Novak actively pursued the role that went to Seberg in Paint Your Wagon (1969). Actresses considered for Seberg's role in Lilith (1964) included Yvette Mimieux, Natalie Wood, Samantha Eggar, Sarah Miles and Diane Cilento.
Of her own movies, she considers Lilith (1964) to be her favorite.
Although being still married to Dennis Berry, she went through a form of marriage to Algerian playboy Ahmed Hasni, but the ceremony had no legal force (31 May 1979).
Considered one of the Nouvelle Vague's icons.
Born to Edward Seberg and Dorothy Benson.
Was a huge fan of Marlon Brando, since seeing his screen debut in the movie The Men (1950). As a teenager, Seberg wrote to Brando and invited him to stay with her parents in Iowa. She met him years later and Brando asked her to renew the invitation.
Ex-daughter-in-law of John Berry.
Wrote and published an open letter to drug addicts' in the daily paper Libération: 27th February 1978.
My first marriage was not happy. I married him because I was impressed that he knew which wines to order and how to leave his visiting card. Ridiculous reasons.
Money doesn't buy happiness. But happiness isn't everything.
"I know that the greatest of actresses has about 20 good years of acting in her and that she will go on living for 30 or 40 years as a human being. So, the conclusion I have come to is that I can't make acting my whole life.
I never knew until I came here [Hollywood] that somebody could be really nice to you for years and really hate your guts. Happens all the time here.
In my long and difficult and mature life, I have come to learn that the less I know about acting and the more I know about everything else, the better I'll be at both acting and living.
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