She was born Annie Violette Fratellini in Algiers, French Algeria to a Pied-noir family of Italian descent. The fourth generation of one of Europe's most famous circus families, The Fratellini Family. Her father was Victor Fratellini. Her mother was Suzanne (née Rousseau) Fratellini. Her grandfather was Paul Fratellini, one of the Fratellini brothers a trio of famous European circus clowns.
For years she avoided following her father, grandfather and 22 other relatives into the ring. Instead, she sang in music halls and nightclubs.
Fratellini launched her career with the Medrano and Pinder circuses when she was 14. Much later in her career, Fratellini became the first female circus clown in France, was a founder of the country's first circus school, and went on to a successful stage and motion picture career.
In 1969, she starred in The Great Love and married the director of the film, Pierre Étaix, the person she credited with making her take her talent for clowning seriously. She was first married in 1954 to Pierre Granier-Deferre, she starred in his film, Metamorphose. They had one daughter, Valerie.
- Annie Fratellini at the Internet Movie Database