Comedian André Wilms has died at the age of 74. A prolific and eclectic actor, he was notably known for his roles in “Le Havre”, “L’Enfer”, “Avoid me of doubt” and above all “Life is a long quiet river”, in which he played Mr. Le Quesnoy.
Death of André Wilms at 74
His face marked the spectators with Life is a long quiet river, Hell or Le Havre. The actor André Wilms died at the age of 74, as announced by the journalist Didier Péron this Thursday, February 10, 2022.
After training as a plasterer, the actor, born in 1947 in Strasbourg, left Alsace in his youth to try his luck in Toulouse. working as a machinist at Maurice Sarrazin’s Théâtre Sorano, he became aware of his artistic vocation.
He began his acting career on stage in the 1970s. He appeared in plays as varied as They went dark under the lonely night according to Samuel Beckett, Tartuffe by Moliere, The Night of the Hunters by Georg Büchner, or The pole by Vladimir Nabokov.
The unforgettable Jean Le Quesnoy
André Wilms’ arrival in the cinema came a little later, in the early 80s. In 1984, Gérard Depardieu directed him in his first film as a director, The Tartuffe. In 1988, the actor played Jean Le Quesnoy, the rigid, catholic, and bourgeois father of a family of Life is a long calm river. Subsequently, the actor finds the filmmaker Étienne Chatiliez for Auntie Danielle, Tanguy, and Confidence reigns.
André Wilms is also a favorite actor of Finnish director Aki Kaurismäki. Together they turn Bohemian Life, The Leningrad Cowboys Meet Moses, Juha, and Le Havre. He also runs under the direction of Claude Chabrol for Hell, by Jean-Jacques Beineix for Roselyne, and the lions by Patrice Leconte for Mr. Hireby François Ozon for Ricky, or even Philippe Garrel for The Salt of Tears. Projects which, as in the theatre, bear witness to his eclecticism.
“When you’re old, you don’t want to slam doors”
In 2017, André Wilms also delivered a poignant interpretation in Taking away my doubt. In this comedy by Carine Tardieu, her character, showing a particularly touching sweetness, befriends François Damiens, without knowing that the latter is possibly her son.
During an interview given to Release in 2012, André Wilms said about old age and the end of his career:
When one is old, one has less desire to slam doors, because one feels that the last one will soon slam on you, and that it will be definitive. Every hour spent is one less hour in the coffin. I would like to finish in a slap, precisely. But before, I would like to form a group of gray panthers, in France. They still exist in the United States, I believe. At our age, no one will put us in prison.
We could start looting Fauchon again. I invite all actors not recognized by the profession to come, on September 12, 2012, loot with me the big grocery store of Bon Marché, and then redistribute our loot.