Wed, Jul 20, 2011 - Page 14 News List

Today’s generation of French actors

By Jason Solomons  /  The Observer, LONDON

Vincent Cassel.

Photo: AFP

Vincent Cassel, 44, and Mathieu Amalric, 45, lead the way, godfathers to a generation of French actors. Both have broken out internationally, Cassel in the Ocean’s series with George Clooney and recently in Black Swan. Prolific actor Amalric, who also won best director at Cannes in 2010 for Tournee, featured as Bond villain Dominic Greene in Quantum of Solace.

In the same age group as Duris is Guillaume Canet, 38, who starred opposite Leonardo di Caprio in The Beach and is now achieving bigger success as a director, with hits such as the thriller Tell No One and Little White Lies, featuring his partner, Marion Cotillard.

A fast-rising French star is former TV comedian Jean Dujardin, 39, who won best actor at Cannes earlier this year for his role in The Artist, a silent movie sure to bring him international recognition. He showed a more serious side, briefly, in Canet’s Little White Lies.

Striking, tall Gaspard Ulliel, 26, has built a strong career, including key roles in A Very Long Engagement and Bertrand Tavernier’s current release The Princess of Montpensier, although he’s most famous for playing a young Hannibal Lecter in Hannibal Rising.

Louis Garrel, 28, is a softer lead, cornering romantic, tortured roles after his breakthrough as Eva Green’s brother in Bernardo Bertolucci’s The Dreamers.

Melvil Poupaud, 38, has starred in a great number of films for directors including Raoul Ruiz, Erich Rohmer and James Ivory, and he collaborated with Francois Ozon in Time to Leave and Le Refuge.

Gilles Lelouche, 39, is the current French man of action, featuring in current hit Point Blank.

Tahar Rahim, 30, broke through as the prisoner Malik in Jacques Audiard’s A Prophet and has starred in British film The Eagle.

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