French comedian Gaspard Ulliel died on January 19, 2022 at the age of 37, following a skiing accident. Here are 5 things to know about the actor’s career.
Notably famous for his roles in Saint Laurent, Just The End of the World or A Long Engagement Sunday, the French actor Gaspard Ulliel, twice Caesarized, died suddenly at the age of 37, following a serious skiing accident. A look back at his career in 5 anecdotes…
He played Hannibal Lecter
After Brian Cox in The Sixth Sense and Anthony Hopkins in The Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal and Red Dragon, it is indeed Gaspard ulliel who was chosen to become the third interpreter of the famous serial killer amateur of human flesh (before Mads Mikkelsen takes over the role in turn in the eponymous series).
Only 23 years old at the time, the young actor, spotted by the production thanks to his role in A long engagement Sunday, therefore embodied the character in adolescence, before he became the criminal that we know. To prepare for this demanding role, Ulliel was coached for a month to improve his English, and studied a lot of Anthony Hopkins’ previous performances.
He played the son and lover of Isabelle Huppert
Almost 10 years after playing Isabelle Huppert’s son in Rithy Panh’s Un barrage contre le Pacifique, Gaspard ulliel played the lover of the famous actress in the drama Eva by Benoît Jacquot. It was during a snowstorm, in a chalet, that the two characters met, he, a successful writer, she, a disturbing and mysterious woman.
“It makes sense,” the actor confided to us in March 2018, shortly before the release of the feature film, “since I think that in this film, precisely, there is an oedipal motor. Finding yourself facing her is always full of surprises.”
Her parents both work in the fashion industry.
A funny coincidence when you know that Gaspard ulliel earned his first César nomination for Best Actor for the role of the famous fashion designer Saint Laurent, in Bertrand Bonello’s biopic. A prize that was finally won by Pierre Niney, for the same role, but for another “competitor” film.
As the actor told us in 2018, his father has long been a designer for clothing brands, and his mother is a stylist. However, for him, the fact that he found himself playing the face of a major fashion house in the cinema was a simple coincidence.
He played under the direction of Martin Scorsese
“I shot a Chanel commercial with Scorsese,” said Gaspard ulliel at our microphone in 2018. “I remember the day when Chanel announced to me that it would be Scorsese: an immense joy. And above all, it comforted me in the idea that there was a direct link that was woven with my activity as an actor.
One minute long, the clip features a celebrity suddenly leaving a press conference. In addition to his collaboration with Martin Scorsese, Gaspard Ulliel also shot two spots with James Gray and Steve McQueen, again for Bleu de Chanel.
As for Gus Van Sant, another famous American filmmaker, he also worked with Ulliel on Paris, je t’aime, and also offered him several other roles, including that of… Yves Saint Laurent:
“We met to discuss a project, a desire he had to adapt a novel called “Beautiful People” by Alicia Drake and which tells the rivalry between Saint Laurent and Lagerfeld. (.. .) It was the first to imagine me in Saint Laurent”, confided the actor to us.
His famous dimple was a scar
Also famous for his smile, complete with a small dimple on his left cheek, Gaspard ulliel suffered from this scar as a child. Indeed, at the age of 6, the future actor had been attacked by a doberman, who had given him a nasty claw in the face.