Arletty Poster


Jump to: Overview (3)  | Mini Bio (2)  | Trivia (5)  | Personal Quotes (2)

Overview (3)

Born in Courbevoie, Seine [now Hauts-de-Seine], France
Died in Paris, France
Birth NameLéonie Marie Julie Bathiat

Mini Bio (2)

Before Arlette-Leonie Bathiat went to the movies she was a secretary and had posed several times as a model for different painters and photographers. In 1920 she debuted on stage at a theatre. She only began to work in movies after 1930. After World War II she was condemned to prison for having been the lover of a German official during the ocupation of France. In 1963 she had an accident which left her almost blind. Her most important movies were filmed and directed by Marcel Carné ("Hotel du Nord (1938)" or "Enfants du Paradis, Les (1945)").

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Volker Boehm

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 Hôtel du Nord (1938) and Le Jour Se Leve (1939). She always illuminated the screen with an unusual mixture of Parisian working-class sense of humour and her romantic beauty, qualities perfectly illustrated by her portrayal of Garance in Children of Paradise (1945) directed by Marcel Carné. After the Liberation, her career suffered a severe drawback owing to a liaison with a German Officer during the Occupation. For liberated France, she became the symbol of treason or what was called "horizontal collaboration," and for that she had to pay. And the price proved to be very high indeed. She was arrested and sent to Drancy concentration camp then to Fresnes prison (near Paris) where she spent 120 days. In December 1944, she was put under house arrest for another two years and condemned to three years work suspension. She was not invited to the premiere of 'Les enfants du paradis' in March 1945 which led French critique 'Jean Sadoul' to write: "Arletty bid farewell to the screen with the best role of her career." Once her work restriction lifted, however, she did return to the screen, notably in Portrait d'un assassin (1949), Huis-clos (1954) and L'air de Paris (1954) and also acted on stage before blindness forced her to retire in the early Sixties. Few French actresses have been so missed.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Christophe Greseque (chrisgreseque@hotmail.com)

Trivia (5)

The nickname is from Maupassant's tale "Arlette"
The funeral cortege made a stop in front of the Hotel du Nord where her famous film of 1938 is located.
In 1914 a man she loved died on the third day of war and the future actress swore she'd never get married "not to become a war widow or, what would be worse, the mother of a soldier."
Member of the jury at the Cannes Film Festival in 1956
Served two months in a French prison after World War II for having a love affair with a Nazi officer, which constituted collaboration in the eyes of French Justice.

Personal Quotes (2)

"My heart is French but my arse is international!" (when she was accused of having had a relationship with a German soldier during World War II)
[observation on her prosecution as a collaborator in wartime France] One rarely says it: condemned to life. It's often more harsh than a death sentence.

See also

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