Gaspar Noé

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Gaspar Noé
Noé in 2021
Born (1963-12-27) 27 December 1963 (age 60)
Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • Film director
  • screenwriter
  • film editor
  • cinematographer
  • film producer
Years active1985–present
SpouseLucile Hadžihalilović

Gaspar Noé (Spanish: [gasˈpaɾ noˈe], French: [ɡaspaʁ nɔ.e]; born 27 December 1963) is an Argentine-French [1] filmmaker based in Paris.[2][3] He is the son of Argentine painter, writer, and intellectual Luis Felipe Noé.[4]

In the early 1990s, Noé co-founded the production company Les Cinémas de la Zone with his wife, Lucile Hadžihalilović.[5] He has directed seven feature films: I Stand Alone (1998), Irréversible (2002), Enter the Void (2009), Love (2015), Climax (2018), Lux Æterna (2019), and Vortex (2021).

Early life[edit]

Noé was born on 27 December 1963 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. His father Luis Felipe Noé has Italian and Argentine ancestry while his mother, Nora Murphy, is of Irish descent.[6] He has a sister named Paula.[citation needed] He lived in New York City until age five,[6] and his family emigrated to France in 1976 to escape the military dictatorship occurring in Argentina at the time. Noé graduated from Louis Lumière College in France in 1982.[7]


His work has been strongly associated with a collection of films often described as new extreme films. Highlighting their challenging sexual and violent bodily imagery, Tim Palmer has described them as part of a cinéma du corps (cinema of the body), and a cinema of 'brutal intimacy' because of its attenuated use of narrative, generally assaulting and often illegible cinematography, confrontational subject material, a treatment of sexual behavior as violent rather than mutually intimate, and a pervasive sense of social nihilism or despair.[8]

Noé often directly addresses the audience in confrontational ways, most notably in I Stand Alone, when an intertitle warns the audience that they have 30 seconds to leave the cinema before the final violent climax. In a different way, this can be seen in Irreversible, in which the 10-minute long single-take rape sequence has frequently been read as an assault on viewers, as well as a depiction of an assault on the female character.


Gaspar Noé and Lucile Hadžihalilović have repeatedly collaborated with each other on film projects. Noé operated the camera and was the cinematographer for two short films directed by Hadžihalilović: La Bouche de Jean-Pierre (1996) and Good Boys Use Condoms (1998). Similarly, Hadžihalilović produced and edited Carne (1991), edited Seul contre tous (1998) and was credited as a writer on Enter the Void (2009). The creative collaboration is made clear in the comparable stylistic choices across these early films, most clearly the credit sequences and the marketing designs.

Three of his films feature the character of a nameless butcher played by Philippe Nahon: Carne, I Stand Alone and, in a cameo, Irréversible.

The music for Irréversible was composed by Thomas Bangalter. The latter also sent Gaspar Noé a unreleased song he made circa 1995 for Climax. The song was named Sangria in reference to the movie.

In collaboration with Saint Laurent, he directed films Lux Æterna and Saint Laurent - Summer of ‘21.[9][10]


Noé stated in the September 2012 edition of Sight & Sound magazine that seeing 2001: A Space Odyssey at the age of seven changed his life, without which experience he would never have become a director.[11] A poster for the film features notably in a scene towards the end of Irreversible.

Many of his movies feature all kind of film posters, which reflects his collection and passion for them. He's believed to be the owner of one of the three known copies of the rarest poster for M (1931 film).[12] Since Irréversible, he's kept working with French film poster designer Laurent Lufroy for all his feature films: Lufroy even appears in Love (as a policeman), Climax (as a dog-handler) and Lux Æterna (using a torch).

Noé also cites the 1983 Austrian serial killer film, Angst, by Gerald Kargl, as a major influence.[13]

Personal life[edit]

He is married to filmmaker Lucile Hadžihalilović.[14] Although he resides and works in France, he does not possess French citizenship.[15]

Noé suffered a near fatal brain hemorrhage in early 2020, which partly inspired the plot of his film Vortex.[16]


Feature films[edit]

Year Title Director Writer Producer Editor
1998 I Stand Alone Yes Yes Yes Yes
2002 Irréversible Yes Yes No Yes
2009 Enter the Void Yes Yes No Yes
2015 Love Yes Yes Yes Yes
2018 Climax Yes Yes No Yes
2019 Lux Æterna Yes Yes Yes No
2021 Vortex Yes Yes No No

Short films[edit]

  • Tintarella di luna (1984)
  • Pulpe amère (1987)
  • Carne (1991)
  • Une expérience d'hypnose télévisuelle (1995)
  • Sodomites (1998)
  • Intoxication (1998)
  • Eva (2005)
  • We Fuck Alone (2006) segment of Destricted
  • SIDA (2008) segment of 8
  • Ritual (2012) segment of 7 Days in Havana
  • Shoot (2014) segment of Short Plays
  • The Art of Filmmaking (2020)
  • Saint Laurent - Summer of '21 (2020)

Music videos[edit]

Other production credits[edit]

Year Title Credit
1985 El exilio de Gardel (Tangos) Assistant Director
1988 Sur
1996 La Bouche de Jean-Pierre Cinematographer
1998 Good Boys Use Condoms Camera Operator
2016 The End Trailer Editor[17]

Cameo and appearances[edit]

Year Title Director Role Note
1984 Tintarella di Luna Himself A teenager from the village. Shortfilm, made while at Louis Lumiere College
1985 Tangos, the Exile of Gardel Fernando Solanas Maria's boyfriend. Short appearance, he doesn't talk in the movie. He was also the Assistant Director.
1995 Cinématon n°1749 Gérard Courant Himself
1996 Le Rocher d'Acapulco Laurent Tuel Sandrine's brother Gaspar Noé doesn't appear on-screen but his voice is used in a phone call scene.
1996 Je suis ton Châtiment Guillaume Bréaud The homeless Shortfilm made for Canal+. Starring Denis Podalydès in the leading role, Albert Dupontel, Marc Caro and original soundtrack by John Powell[18]
1997 Dobermann Jan Kounen Kebab seller
2002 Irréversible Himself A client from the club
2009 Enter the Void Himself Alex Alex is a character played by Cyril Roy. But in a nightmare scene, there is a brief moment during which Gaspar Noé is dressed up as Cyril Roy's character.
2013 9 Month Stretch Albert Dupontel A prisoner Cameo alongside Jan Kounen.
2015 Love Himself Noé, the Gallery Owner Credited as Aron Pages, which is an anagram of his own name.
2020 Mon Cousin Jan Kounen A patient Cameo alongside Albert Dupontel.
2022 Three in the Drift of the Creative Act Fernando Solanas Himself Posthumous documentary in which director Fernando Solanas, Luis Felipe Noé, both of their sons (respectively Juan Solanas and Gaspar Noé) and Eduardo Pavlovsky discuss about creating arts.[19]
2023 Dario Argento Panico Simone Scafidi Himself Documentary film
2024 Schirkoa: In Lies We Trust Ishan Shuklan - This feature film is the longer version of Indian shortfilm Schirkoa. Gaspar Noé was announced in the cast in 2021.[19]
2024 Dans la peau de Blanche Houellebecq Guillaume Nicloux Gaspar, the director

Besides being a filmmaker, he is an occasional photographer: in 2013, Noé shot the cover art for American singer-songwriter Sky Ferreira's debut album Night Time, My Time. Other celebrities, such as Agnès b., Todd Solondz or Stacy Martin were shot by Gaspar Noé, as well as several models for erotic magazines.[20]


Many of Noé's films were polarizing or controversial with viewers due to their inclusion of graphic scenes of violence and sexual violence. I Stand Alone, Irreversible, Enter the Void, We Fuck Alone, Love and Climax were all considered controversial for their challenging sexual and violent imagery.


Irreversible was hugely divisive amongst critics with journals such as Sight and Sound (UK) and Positif (France) allowing critics to openly voice their disagreements about the film.[21][22][23] It caused substantial outrage in many countries for its central scene of rape, filmed in a single take and lasting nearly ten minutes in total, with some critics comparing it to pornography because of its length and the use of a static camera,[24][25] as well as considering the film as a whole to be deeply homophobic for its hellish portrayal of a gay S&M club.[26] On the other hand, it was also frequently praised for its brutal portrayal of the horrors of rape, and its implicit challenge to viewers of the scene. Eugenie Brinkema, for instance, describes Irreversible as "ethically, generically, subjectively" disruptive: "the rape [...] is real, it is private, it is contained – it is insufferably present. [...] it interrogates vehicles of receptivity and the power and violence done to bodies by bodies".[27]


Year Award Category Title Result
1991 Avignon Film Festival Prix Tournage Carne Won
Cannes Film Festival SACD Award Won
1992 Fantasporto Best Film Nominated
1994 Yubari International Fantastic Film Festival Minami Toshiko Award / Critic's Award Won[28]
1998 Cannes Film Festival Mercedes-Benz Award I Stand Alone Won
Namur International Festival of French-Speaking Film Golden Bayard Nominated
Molodist International Film Festival Best Full-Length Fiction Film Nominated
Sitges Film Festival Best Film Nominated
Sarajevo Film Festival FIPRESCI Prize Won
Sitges Film Festival Best Screenplay Won
Stockholm Film Festival Bronze Horse Nominated
1999 Buenos Aires International Festival of Independent Cinema Best Film Nominated
2001 Boston Underground Film Festival Best of Festival Won
2002 Cannes Film Festival Palme d'Or Irréversible Nominated
Stockholm Film Festival Bronze Horse Won
2004 Bodil Awards Best Non-American Film Nominated
2009 Cannes Film Festival Palme d'Or Enter the Void Nominated
Sitges Film Festival Special Prize of the Jury Won
Best Film Nominated
2015 Cannes Film Festival Queer Palm Love Nominated
Camerimage Best 3D Film Love Won
2018 Cannes Film Festival Art Cinema Award Climax Won
Sitges Film Festival Best Film Won
2022 Dublin International Film Festival Best Film Vortex Won
San Sebastián International Film Festival Zabaltegi-Tabakalera Prize Won
Ghent International Film Festival Grand Prix for Best Film Won
International Istanbul Film Festival Golden Tulip for Best Film / FIPRESCI Prize Won


  1. ^ Trinh-Thi, Coralie (7 March 2016). "Tout contre Gaspar Noé". Wyylde (in French). Archived from the original on 11 March 2016.
  2. ^ Ransome, Noel (28 February 2019). "French Director Gaspar Noé on America's Fear of the Penis". Vice. Retrieved 21 October 2019.
  3. ^ "Exclusive Q&A: Director Gaspar Noe's View of The Cusp of Death As Detailed in Enter The Void". Huffington Post. 31 October 2010.
  4. ^ PremiereFR (7 May 2010). "Enter the Void : Gaspar Noé réagit aux critiques" (Video upload). Youtube. Google, Inc. Archived from the original on 21 December 2021. Retrieved 26 July 2012.
  5. ^ [bare URL PDF]
  6. ^ a b Nesselson, Lisa (20 January 1999). "Gaspar Noé". Variety. Retrieved 23 May 2023.
  7. ^ Palmer, Tim (2015). Irreversible. London; New York, NY: Palgrave. p. 15. ISBN 978-0-230-33697-1.
  8. ^ Palmer, Tim (2011). Brutal Intimacy: Analyzing Contemporary French Cinema, Wesleyan University Press, Middleton CT. ISBN 0-8195-6827-9.
  9. ^ Debruge, Peter (4 May 2022). "'Lux Æterna' Review: Gaspar Noé Takes Audiences on a Witchy, Twitchy Backstage Tour". Variety. Retrieved 16 January 2023.
  10. ^ "Saint Laurent's "Summer of '21" Feels the Love". Vanity Fair. 30 December 2020. Retrieved 16 January 2023.
  11. ^ "The 2012 Sight & Sound Directors' Top Ten". Sight & Sound: 69. September 2012. unknown ID 9-770037-480090. Archived from the original on 11 August 2012. Retrieved 12 August 2012.
  12. ^ Weston, Hillary (18 November 2015). "Gaspar Noé's Movie Mania". The Criterion Collection. Retrieved 6 February 2024.
  13. ^ "Gasper Noe - Part 3". Vice. 13 October 2010. Archived from the original on 10 October 2014. Retrieved 28 June 2017.
  14. ^ "The Auteurs: Gaspar Noé". Cinema Axis. 29 August 2015. Retrieved 5 February 2017.
  15. ^ Leigh, Danny (13 November 2015). "Interview: Gaspar Noé". Financial Times. Archived from the original on 11 December 2022. Retrieved 20 November 2021. Noé still doesn't have a French passport but after his parents fled the Argentine junta when he was 13, he finds real meaning in his adopted country's free speech
  16. ^ Zigler, Brianna (27 September 2021). "Vortex is an Absorbing, Despairing Portrait of Aging". Paste. Retrieved 20 December 2021.
  17. ^ "Nicloux's The End teaser edited by Noé is available". Retrieved 6 February 2024.
  18. ^ "When Gaspar Noé starred in a slasher movie..." Retrieved 6 February 2024.
  19. ^ a b festivaldecannes (26 May 2022). "Tres en la deriva del acto creativo (Three in the Drift of the Creative Act): philosophizing about the creative process". Festival de Cannes. Retrieved 6 February 2024.
  20. ^ Veille, Alexis. "Photography". Le Temps Détruit Tout. Retrieved 6 February 2024.
  21. ^ Kermode, Mark; James, Nick (2003). "Horror Movie". Sight and Sound. 13 (2): 20–22.
  22. ^ Rouyer, Philippe (2002). ""Irréversible": Bonheur perdu". Positif: 497–498.
  23. ^ Valens, Grégory (2002). "Irréversible: Irresponsible". Positif: 497–498.
  24. ^ Paris, Barry (11 April 2003). "'Irreversible' gives new meaning to sick and repulsive". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. p. 18. Retrieved 20 June 2018.
  25. ^ Felperin, Leslie (2003). "Reviews: Irreversible". Sight and Sound. 13 (3): 46–48.
  26. ^ Edelstein, David (2003). "Irreversible Errors: Gaspar Noé's Cinematic Rape". Slate Movies. Retrieved 21 January 2023.
  27. ^ Brinkema, Eugenie (2004). "Irréversible: A review". Scope.
  28. ^ "YUBARI INTERNATIONAL FANTASTIC ADVENTURE FILM FESTIVAL'94". Archived from the original on 18 July 2011. Retrieved 19 September 2009.


  • Frey, Mattias. (2016). Extreme Cinema: The Transgressive Rhetoric of Today’s Art Film Culture. Rutgers University Press.
  • Horeck, Tanya, & Kendall, Tina. (Eds.). (2011). The New Extremism in Cinema: From France to Europe. Edinburgh University Press.
  • Palmer, Tim. (2011). Brutal intimacy: Analyzing Contemporary French cinema. Wesleyan University Press.
  • Palmer, Tim. (2015). Irreversible. Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Russell, Dominique. (Ed.). (2010). Rape in Art Cinema. Continuum.

External links[edit]