Barbet Schroeder

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Barbet Schroeder
Barbet Schroeder Cannes 2017.jpg
Schroeder at the Cannes Film Festival, 2017
Born (1941-08-26) 26 August 1941 (age 81)
Tehran, Iran
Occupation(s)Director, producer
SpouseBulle Ogier

Barbet Schroeder (born 26 August 1941) is an Iranian-born Swiss film director and producer who started his career in French cinema in the 1960s, working with directors such as Jean-Luc Godard and Jacques Rivette. Since the late 1980s, he has directed many big budget Hollywood films, often mixing melodrama with the thriller genre in films like Single White Female, Kiss of Death, and Murder by Numbers. He has been nominated for the Palme d'Or for his 1987 film Barfly, and an Academy Award for Best Director for his 1990 film Reversal of Fortune.


Schroeder was born in Tehran, Iran, the son of Ursula, a German physician, and Jean-William Schroeder, a Swiss geologist.[1][2] From ages 6 to 11, he lived in Colombia where his father was a diplomat for the Swiss government.[3] Both he and his family then left for France, where he studied at the Sorbonne in Paris.

Schroeder's production company "Les Films du Losange", founded by him at age 23, produced some of the best-known films of the French New Wave. His directorial debut, More (1969), about heroin addiction, became a hit in Europe. Pink Floyd wrote music for this movie and released the album, More. They also wrote the soundtrack for his 1972 film La Vallée, released as the album Obscured by Clouds.

He later went on to direct more mainstream Hollywood fare, such as Barfly (1987) starring Mickey Rourke, Single White Female (1992), and Reversal of Fortune (1990), for which Jeremy Irons as Claus von Bülow received an Academy Award. Despite his many commercially successful films, Schroeder continues to be interested in making smaller films with a more limited audience, such as the adaptation of Colombian writer Fernando Vallejo's controversial novel La virgen de los sicarios (2000) or the documentary General Idi Amin Dada: A Self Portrait (1974), featuring extensive interviews with the Ugandan dictator and Terror's advocate (2007) about terrorism in the last 50 years seen through the eyes of a lawyer, Jacques Vergès, and his clients.

Schroeder has also made some appearances as an actor: playing one of the 'ghosts' in Jacques Rivette's Céline et Julie vont en bateau (Céline and Julie Go Boating), a cameo as a Porsche driver in Beverly Hills Cop III (1994), as the President of France in Mars Attacks! (1996), as a hair products salesman in Paris, je t'aime (2006), and as the mechanic in The Darjeeling Limited (2007). Today he resides in France and is married to actress Bulle Ogier.

In 2009, Schroeder signed a petition in support of film director Roman Polanski, calling for his release after Polanski was arrested in Switzerland in relation to his 1977 charge for drugging and raping a 13-year-old girl.[4]

Schroeder directed the 12th episode of the 3rd season of the American dramatic television series Mad Men that first aired on 1 November 2009. The episode was entitled "The Grown Ups", and was notable for its depiction of the events of the Kennedy assassination.


Title Year Credited as Notes Ref(s)
Director Writer Producer Editor Actor
The Bakery Girl of Monceau 1963 No No Yes No Yes as car salesman
Nadja in Paris 1964 No No Yes No No Directed by Eric Rohmer, written & performed by Nadja Tesich
Six in Paris 1965 No No Yes No Yes as Jean-Pierre (segment "Gare du Nord")
More 1969 Yes Yes Yes No No
Out 1 1971 No No No No Yes as Gian-Reto
La Vallée 1972 Yes Yes No No No
Out 1: Spectre No No No No Yes
Général Idi Amin Dada: Autoportrait 1974 Yes Yes No No No English: General Idi Amin Dada: A Self Portrait
Documentary film
Celine and Julie Go Boating No No Yes No Yes as Olivier
Maîtresse 1975 Yes Yes No No No
Koko, le gorille qui parle 1978 Yes Yes Yes No No English: Koko: A Talking Gorilla
Documentary film
Roberta 1979 No No No No Yes as Vittorio
La Mémoire courte No No No No Yes Un invité au dîner
Tricheurs 1984 Yes Yes No No Yes Un joueur (uncredited)
Love on the Ground No No No No Yes as Audience (uncredited)
The Charles Bukowski Tapes 1985 Yes Yes Yes Yes No Documentary film
Barfly 1987 Yes No Yes No No
Reversal of Fortune 1990 Yes No No No No
La Reine Margot No No No No Yes as an advisor
The Golden Boat No No No No Yes Mean Passer-by
Single White Female 1992 Yes No Yes No No
Beverly Hills Cop III 1994 No No No No Yes Man in Porsche
Kiss of Death 1995 Yes No Yes No No
Before and After 1996 Yes No Yes No No
Mars Attacks! No No No No Yes Maurice, the French President
Desperate Measures 1998 Yes No Yes No No
La virgen de los sicarios 2000 Yes No Yes No Yes uncredited
Murder by Numbers 2002 Yes No Yes No No
Ne fais pas ça! 2004 No No No No Yes Un client du restaurant #1
Une aventure 2005 No No No No Yes Dr. Idelman
Paris, je t'aime 2006 No No No No Yes Monsieur Henny (segment "Porte de Choisy")
Terror's Advocate 2007 Yes No Yes No No Documentary film, narrated by himself
The Duchess of Langeais 2007 No No No No Yes Duc de Grandlieu
The Darjeeling Limited 2007 No No No No Yes The Mechanic
Inju, la bête dans l'ombre 2008 Yes Yes No No No English: Inju: The Beast in the Shadow
L'avocat 2011 No No No No Yes Jacques Meco
Le grand soir 2012 No No No No Yes Jacques Meco
Par exemple, Electre 2013 No No No No Yes
Portrait of the Artist 2014 No No No No Yes Le médecin (final film role)
Amnesia 2015 Yes Yes No No No
The Venerable W. 2017 Yes No Yes No No


  • 2009: Mad Men: "The Grown-Ups" (TV)


  1. ^ Barbet Schroeder Biography (1941-)
  2. ^ Barbet Schroeder Biography - Yahoo! Movies Archived 24 February 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Interview: To Love and Die in Medellin; Schroeder Returns to Colombia with “Our Lady”
  4. ^ "Le cinéma soutient Roman Polanski / Petition for Roman Polanski". Société des Auteurs et Compositeurs Dramatiques (in French). 28 September 2009. Archived from the original on 4 June 2012. Retrieved 29 August 2021.

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