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Denys de La Patellière obituary

30 July 2013 5:52 AM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

French film director who attracted big stars and box-office success but was disdained by the Nouvelle Vague

Denys de La Patellière, who has died aged 92, was of the generation of French film directors described with ironic contempt by François Truffaut, Jean-Luc Godard and other critics turned Nouvelle Vague directors as representing le cinéma de papa. But De La Patellière had several huge box-office hits in France in the 1950s and 60s, featuring some of the biggest internationally known French stars of the period such as Lino Ventura, Danielle Darrieux, Michèle Mercier, Pierre Fresnay, Bernard Blier and, above all, Jean Gabin, whom he directed in six films.

"I was a commercial director, which for me is not a pejorative word," De La Patellière recalled. "I never had the ambition to become an auteur, but to make entertaining films that pleased general audiences." In a way, his first film, Les Aristocrates (1955), could »

- Ronald Bergan

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1 item from 2013


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