August 24, 1920|
|Died||June 11, 2008
Life and career
Desailly studied at the École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts and the Conservatoire de Paris winning first prize, joining the Comédie-Française in 1942. In 1946 he became a leading member of the Jean-Louis Barrault-Madeleine Renaud company at the Théâtre Marigny, playing in a wide repertoire from Les Fausses Confidences, Bérénice and Le Songe d'une nuit d'été.
Desailly's second wife was the French actress Simone Valère, with whom he formed a theatre company which they directed successively at the Théâtre Hébertot and the Théâtre de la Madeleine. A wide repertoire was played at the two theatres from 1972 to 2002.
In music he was the narrator on the 1965 recording of Stravinsky's Oedipus rex conducted by Karel Ančerl for Supraphon and on the 1971 recording of Honegger's Le roi David under Charles Dutoit for Erato (with Valère as the prophetess).
- 1943: Le voyageur de la Toussaint - Gilles Mauvoisin
- 1946: Sylvie et le fantôme - Frédéric
- 1946: Patrie, directed by Louis Daquin - Karloo
- 1949: Keep an Eye on Amelia (Occupe-toi d'Amélie) - Marcel
- 1955: Les Grandes manoeuvres, directed by René Clair - Victor Duverger
- 1958: Les Grandes Familles, directed by Denys de La Patellière - François Schoudler
- 1958: Maigret tend un piège - Marcel Maurin
- 1959: A Midsummer Night's Dream (Sen noci svatojánské) animation directed by Jiří Trnka - narrator (French version)
- 1961: La Mort de Belle directed by Édouard Molinaro - Stéphane Blanchon
- 1962: Le Doulos, directed by Jean-Pierre Melville - Le commissaire Clain
- 1964: The Soft Skin (La Peau douce), directed by François Truffaut (nominated for the Golden Palm at the Cannes Film Festival in 1964; received the Bodil Award for Best European Film in 1965) - Pierre Lachenay
- 1967: La Vie parisienne, directed by Yves-André Hubert (television version of 1958 stage production by Jean-Louis Barrault) - Raoul de Gardefeu
- 1972: Un flic - L'homme distingué
- 1972: Les Rois maudits (miniseries) - Narrator
- 1981: Le Professionnel (won the Golden Screen Award, 1983) - Le ministre
- 1994: Le Radeau de la Méduse - Tullaye
Awards and nominations
- 1960: Nominated for the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role in 1960, for his role in Maigret tend un piège.
- 2002: Awarded the Molière acting prize.
- L'acteur Jean Desailly est décédé (Short obituary in Le Figaro, 12 June 2008, accessed 25 May 2015.
- Don des archives de la Compagnie Valère-Desailly (ARchives of the company), accessed 25 May 2015
- Yon, Jean-Claude. Jacques Offenbach. Éditions Gallimard, Paris, 2000, p663.
- "Golden Screen, Germany" (Retrieved on June 17, 2008)
- “French actor Desailly, famed on stage and screen, dies”, MSNBC, 12. Juni 2008 (Retrieved on June 17, 2008)
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