Alexandre Charles Auguste Bisson (April 9, 1848 – January 27, 1912) was an important French playwright, vaudeville creator, and novelist. Born in Briouze, Orne in Lower Normandy, he was successful in his native France as well as in the United States. Remembered as a significant creator of Parisian vaudeville, in collaboration with Edmond Gondinet, Bisson's 1881 three-act comedy "Un Voyage d'agrément" was performed at the Théâtre du Vaudeville in Paris.
In 1892, the first of a Bisson's dozen plays came to New York City's Broadway stage. Of his works, Bisson is best remembered for his play "Madame X" that was performed in 1910 both in Paris and on Broadway with Sarah Bernhardt in the leading role. Over the years, the play would be revived for Broadway three times and nine Madame X motion pictures in several languages have been filmed. The first silent screen adaptation was in 1916 and the latest in 2000. Better-known versions include a 1929 "talkie" production starring Ruth Chatterton and directed by Lionel Barrymore plus the 1966 production starring Lana Turner. In 2006 a musical has been produced in Chicago, IL based on the original play "Madame X".
Bisson also adapted the 1910 bestselling Florence Barclay novel, The Rosary as a three-act play for the Paris stage. Widely acclaimed in the United States, Alexandre Bisson was invited to write about the theatre by The Saturday Evening Post and his articles The Dilemmas of the Theater and How the World Contributes to the American Stage were published in 1912.
Alexandre Bisson died in Paris in 1912 at the age of sixty-three.
Selected works for stage
- 1882: 115, Rue Pigalle
- 1886: Une Mission délicate
- 1886: Un Conseil judiciaire
- 1887: Ma gouvernante
- 1888: Les Surprises du divorce (with Antony Mars)
- 1892: Le Député de Bombignac)
- 1893: Le Veglione (le Bal masqué)) (with Albert Carré)
- 1895: Monsieur le Directeur ! (with Fabrice Carré)
- 1896: Disparu !
- 1897: Jalouse
- 1897: La famille Pont-Biquet
- 1898: Feu Toupinel (adapted by William Gillette as Mr. Wilkinson's Widows)
- 1898: Le Contrôleur des wagons-lits
- 1900: Château historique !
- 1901: Le Bon juge
- 1907: Les Plumes du paon
- 1908: Madame X
- 1910: Nick Carter vs. Fantômas (with Guillaume Livet) (translated ISBN 978-1-934543-05-4)
Madame X adapations
- Madame X (1910 film)
- Madame X (1916 film)
- Madame X (1920 film)
- Madame X (1929 film)
- Madame X (1937 film)
- Madame X (1952 film)
- Madame X (1954 film)
- Madame X (1966 film)
- Madame X (1981 film)
- Madame X (2000 film)
- The Trial of Madame X, a 1948 film, based on the same story as the other Madame X films