That Most Important Thing: Love

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That Most Important Thing: Love
That Most Important Thing Love.jpg
Directed byAndrzej Żuławski
Written byChristopher Frank
Andrzej Żuławski
StarringRomy Schneider
Jacques Dutronc
Fabio Testi
Klaus Kinski
Music byGeorges Delerue
Distributed byS. N. Prodis (France)
Seaberg Film Distr. (US) dubbed
Release date
12 February 1975
Running time
105 mins (cut version)
113 mins (director's cut, NTSC)
108 mins (director's cut, PAL)

That Most Important Thing: Love (original French title: L'important c'est d'aimer) is a French film directed by Polish filmmaker Andrzej Żuławski. It tells the story of a passionate love relationship between Nadine Chevalier, a B-List actress (Romy Schneider) and Servais Mont, a photographer (Fabio Testi) in the violent and unforgiving French show business.

In 1975, Żuławski coadapted and directed this movie, based on the novel by Christopher Frank La Nuit américaine [fr] (unrelated to the 1973 François Truffaut film of that name). The success in France was such – it was featuring the very popular actress Romy Schneider and French singer Jacques Dutronc – that it allowed Żuławski to come back to Poland. The film had a total of 1,544,986 admissions in France.[1]

Romy Schneider received the inaugural César Award for Best Actress for this role and Pedro Almodóvar dedicated his film All About My Mother partially to her in this role.[2]


Servais Mont, a photographer, meets Nadine Chevalier who earns her money starring in cheap soft-core movies. Trying to help her, he borrows the money from loan sharks to finance the theatrical production of Richard III and gives Nadine a part. Nadine is torn between Servais, with whom she is falling in love, and her husband Jacques, to whom she has moral obligations.



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