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Jean Renoir: Articles


Simone Simon: 'La Bête Humaine' 1938 Femme Fatale

Simone Simon and Jean Gabin in 'La Bête Humaine.' Simone Simon in 'La Bête Humaine' 1938: Jean Renoir's film noir (See previous post: “'Cat People' 1942 Actress Simone Simon Remembered.”) In the late 1930s, with her Hollywood career stalled while facing competition at 20th Century Fox from another French import, Annabella (later Tyrone Power's wife), Simone Simon returned to France. Once there, she reestablished herself as an actress to be reckoned with in Jean Renoir's La Bête Humaine. An updated version of Emile Zola's 1890 novel, La Bête Humaine is enveloped in a dark, brooding atmosphere not uncommon in pre-World War II French films. Known for their “poetic realism,” examples from that era include Renoir's own The Lower Depths (1936), […]


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Simone Simon: 'La Bête Humaine' 1938 Femme Fatale



Deanna Durbin Movies: Remembering One of Hollywood's Biggest Stars & Universal Savior

Deanna Durbin in 'I'll Be Yours.' Deanna Durbin dies at 91: One of the top stars of Hollywood's studio era According to Hollywood lore, teen star Deanna Durbin saved Universal Pictures from bankruptcy in the mid-'30s, when her movies earned the Great Depression-hit studio some much-needed millions. The story may seem like an exaggeration, but in fact future Universal players such as Bud Abbott and Lou Costello, Maria Montez, Rock Hudson, Doris Day, and even Jaws' Bruce the Shark and the assorted dinosaurs found in Steven Spielberg's Jurassic Park partly owe their film careers to the pretty, bubbly, full-faced, soprano-voiced Deanna Durbin, the star of immensely successful Universal releases such as Three Smart Girls, One Hundred Men and a Girl, […]


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Deanna Durbin Movies: Remembering One of Hollywood's Biggest Stars & Universal Savior



Paulette Dubost Dead at 100: Worked with Jean Renoir & Jacques Tourneur

Paulette Dubost, known as the “Dean of French Cinema,” and an actress in films directed by Jean Renoir, Marcel L'Herbier, Jacques Tourneur, Julien Duvivier, Max Ophüls, Preston Sturges, François Truffaut, Louis Malle, and Marcel Carné, died of “natural causes” on Sept. 21 in the Parisian suburb of Longjumeau. The Paris-born Dubost had turned 100 years old on October 8, 2010. Dubost's show business career began at the age of seven, performing various duties at the Paris Opera. Following some stage training, her film debut took place in 1931 in Wilhelm Thiele's Le bal, which also marked the film debut of Danielle Darrieux (who's still around and still active). Ultimately, Dubost's film career was to span more than seven decades, during […]


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Paulette Dubost Dead at 100: Worked with Jean Renoir & Jacques Tourneur