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Surviving Picasso (1996)

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The passionate Merchant Ivory drama tells the story of Françoise Gilot (Natascha McElhone), the only lover of Pablo Picasso (Sir Anthony Hopkins) who was strong enough to withstand his ferocious cruelty, and move on with her life.

Director:

James Ivory

Writers:

Arianna Huffington (book) (as Arianna Stassinopoulos Huffington), Ruth Prawer Jhabvala (screenplay)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Anthony Hopkins ... Pablo Picasso
Natascha McElhone ... Françoise Gilot
Julianne Moore ... Dora Maar
Joss Ackland ... Henri Matisse
Dennis Boutsikaris ... Kootz
Peter Eyre ... Sabartes
Peter Gerety ... Marcel
Susannah Harker ... Marie-Thérèse
Jane Lapotaire ... Olga Picasso
Joseph Maher ... Kahnweiler
Bob Peck ... Françoise's Father
Diane Venora ... Jacqueline
Dominic West ... Paulo Picasso
Joan Plowright ... Françoise's Grandmother
Laura Aikman ... Maya
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Storyline

In 1943, a young painter, Françoise Gilot (1921- ) (Natascha McElhone) meets Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) (Sir Anthony Hopkins), already the most celebrated artist in the world. For the next ten years, she is his mistress, bears him two children, is his muse, and paints within his element. She also learns slowly about the other women who have been or still are in his life: Dora Maar (Julianne Moore), Marie-Thérèse (Susannah Harker) (whose daughter is Picasso's), and Olga Koklowa (Jane Lapotaire), each of whom seems deeply scarred by their life with Picasso. Gilot's response is to bring each into her relationship with Picasso. How does one survive Picasso? She keeps painting, and she keeps her good humor and her independence. When the time comes, she has the strength to leave. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Only his passion for women could rival his passion for painting.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for a scene of nudity and brief sex-related language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 September 1996 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ahavotav Shel Picasso See more »

Filming Locations:

France See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$16,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$87,054, 22 September 1996, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,002,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A few years after this movie, Sir Anthony Hopkins had already signed on to play Hannibal Lecter in Hannibal (2001), but Jodie Foster had declined. When Director Ridley Scott let Hopkins know what actresses were being considered to play Clarice, Hopkins remembered how much he enjoyed working with Julianne Moore on this movie, and recommended her. See more »

Quotes

Olga: He's useless. Nothing but drink and girls. Just like his father.
Picasso: I don't drink.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Trip to Spain (2017) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Surviving this movie!(Drink to me ,drink to my health,you know I can't drink anymore!)
4 November 2002 | by dbdumonteilSee all my reviews

Anthony Hopkins is a very gifted actor,nobody can deny,but ,he was beginning to do any job going:playing Hannibal,Nixon and Picasso,it's much ,too much !Besides,James Ivory 's majestic talent ("Howards end" "remains of the day" "A room with the view" "Maurice") had inexorably waned."Jefferson in Paris" was already unsatisfying,smug and overblown.Still,it was entertaining."Surviving Picasso' is not.Only five minutes -let's be generous- are given over to the process of creation.The essential revolves around Picasso's relationship with women;this is neither rewarding nor entertaining,being trite,hollow and devoid of emotion , violence or/and tenderness.

Word to the wise:people interested in Picasso's art -which is more interesting than his private life!who cares?- should try to see Henri-Georges Clouzot 's "le mystère Picasso" (1956):Unlike Ivory,Clouzot films the REAL Picasso while he is creating.He paints on a sheet of glass and we can follow every lick of paint.


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