Maurice Pialat at the French Cinémathèque in Paris

February 15, 2013 | By French Culture

Starting 18 February 2013, the Maurice Pialat collection, which Sylvie Pialat recently entrusted to La Cinémathèque française, will be on exhibit in Paris. Comprising posters, archives, costumes, photographs, films and, above all, drawings and paintings, this exhibition accompanies the complete retrospective of the director who passed away ten years ago, on 11 January 2003. It traces Maurice Pialat's whole career, from his first vocation, painting, in which he initiated himself in the early 1940s, up to his last film, Le Garçu, released in 1995.

Through a selection from the 33 paintings and 16 drawings deposited in the collections, one will discover a little-known aspect of the director of Van Gogh, initially trained at the Ecole des Arts Décoratifs in Paris. The exhibition also reveals the first, unrealized projects, the encounters and relations with the producers of his documentaries and short features: a long, prolific period during which Maurice Pialat also tried his hand at acting before shooting his first feature, L’Enfance nue / Naked Childhood, in 1967 then, three years later, the television series La Maison des bois / The House in the Woods.

In numerous production stills, we will see some of the actors with whom he worked on the job: Sandrine Bonnaire, Gérard Depardieu, Isabelle Huppert, Nathalie Baye, Jacques Dutronc, Jean Yanne… Letters, sometimes unpublished, mention personalities who were envisaged for a time, such as Simone Signoret for La Gueule ouverte.

Synopses, scripts and notebooks, many of them handwritten and annotated, reveal a relation to writing both impulsive and intransigent, whilst also expressing a highly singular cinema that continued to be written as shooting went on. Unpublished interviews with close friends and collaborators having generously contributed to enriching this archive collection - Sandrine Bonnaire, scriptwriter Arlette Langmann, editor Yann Dedet or art director Katia Wyszkop - bear witness to Maurice Pialat's work method. Film excerpts, interviews, screen tests... all these filmed documents will also show, beyond the image of the prickly director that is often remembered, a warm man, close to his crew.

More information @ Cinémathèque Française

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