Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin, Minister of Culture, pays tribute to Françoise Arnoul, an iconic French actress of the 1950s, and a woman of commitment.
Françoise Arnoul trained in dance and drama before making her film debut in Willy Rozier’s L'Epave (1949). This film propels her to the rank of icon, symbol of an assumed and sensual femininity.
Her talent as an actress is revealed in all its brilliance when she gives the reply to Jean Gabin, in Jean Renoir’s French Cancan (1955), or Des gens sans importance by Henri Verneuil (1956). His performances, faced with one of the most experienced and talented French actors of his time, immediately aroused the admiration of the public and critics.
Henri Decoin’s diptych, La Chatte (1958) and then La Chatte comes out of her clutches (1960), makes her resistant character dressed in a black raincoat a true myth of our cinema.
From the 1960s onwards, Françoise Arnoul put her acting career on the back burner in order to support in her projects her companion, the committed director Bernard Paul. She co-produces with him three feature films, marked by their convictions.
Although her appearances on the screen are more rare, Françoise Arnoul continues to interpret roles in cinema from time to time. It is thus found in The will of Orpheus of Jean Cocteau, Compartment Killers, of the very young then Costa-Gavras, or in the sketch Le roi Yvetot, by Jean Renoir.
Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin extends her sincere condolences to her family and loved ones.