Luce Guilbeault

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Luce Guilbeault
Born(1935-03-05)5 March 1935
Outremont, Quebec, Canada
Died12 July 1991(1991-07-12) (aged 56)
OccupationActress, director
Years active1958–1990
Notable work

Luce Guilbeault (born in Outremont on 5 March 1935 – died in Montreal on 12 July 1991)[1] was a Québécoise actress and director. She was one of the leading figures of Quebec repertory theatre of the 1960s and one of the most-sought actresses of Quebec cinema in the 1970s.[2] She received a Canadian Film Award in 1975 and the first Prix Iris from the National Film Board of Canada in 1991 for her life's work.


Raised in Montreal as a doctor's daughter, Luce Guilbeault was introduced to the arts at an early age, particularly in music and theatre.[3] She studied for five years with William Graves at the National Film Board of Canada (NFB), using the Stanislawski method, then studied for a few years at the Actors Studio in New York.[1][3]

Guilbeault's career began in the theatre, where she excelled in the Quebec repertoire (e.g.: Réjean Ducharme, Michel Tremblay).[1] She is most remembered for her career in the cinema, with some 20 films to her credit. Her first major film role was that of a disillusioned wife in Denys Arcand's La Maudite Galette (1972) followed by Réjeanne Padovani (1973). She played in O.K. ... Laliberté (1973) by Marcel Carrière, Tendresse ordinaire (1973) by Jacques Leduc and in the films of Anne Claire Poirier.[4]

As a director, Guilbeault mainly created biographies of feminists, including actress Denise Benoît and a series of American feminists. She also directed the 1978 direct cinema film D'abord Ménagères which documented housework and the status of women in Quebec.[3][1]

She was successful in the 1980s with the television soap operas Des dames de cœur [fr] and Un signe de feu [fr].[3]

Around 1990 Guilbeault wanted to write a booklet about the fate of aging actresses, composing an interview list of her contemporaries, "with nothing to lose ... and willing to confide." She found a publisher but was refused a grant from the Ministry of Culture.[5] She died from cancer on 12 July 1991.[6]


From 1991 to 1998 Les Rendez-vous du cinéma québécois awarded the Prix Luce-Guilbeault [fr] to the best young promising actor or actress; winners included Luc Picard, Linda Roy [fr] and Patrick Huard.[3]

In 2000 the feature-length biographical documentary Luce Guilbeault, explorActrice was produced by the NFB, directed by Marcel Jean.[6]

In 2016 Ariel Borremans assembled the book Ma mère dans l'oeil de mon père which features photographs of her mother, Guilbault, taken by his father, Guy Borremans [fr] (1934–2012). The photographs are accompanied by texts from Quebec artists including Michel Tremblay, André Melançon, Réjean Ducharme, and Denys Arcand. Critic Antoine Aubert noted that, beyond the grace of the actress and the love of the photographer for his muse, it tells of an artistic history essential to the identity of Quebec.[7][8]




  1. ^ a b c d e "Les gens du cinéma: Luce Guilbault" [People of the cinema: Luce Guilbault] (in French). Retrieved 20 November 2017.
  2. ^ Perreault, Catherine (27 March 2012). "Luce Guilbeault : la blonde, la mégère, la féministe..." [Luce Guilbeault: the blonde, the shrew, the feminist...] (in French). National Film Board of Canada. Retrieved 20 November 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d e "Luce Guilbeault" (in French). Telequebec. Retrieved 20 November 2017.
  4. ^ Veronneau, Pierre (15 December 2013). "Luce Guilbeault". The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved 20 November 2017.
  5. ^ Lanctôt, Jacques (22 October 2016). "L'œil amoureux du photographe". Le Journal de Montreal (in French). Quebecor. Retrieved 20 November 2017.
  6. ^ a b "Luce Guilbeault, explorActress" (in French). National Film Board of Canada. Retrieved 20 November 2017.
  7. ^ Aubert, Antoine (27 October 2016). "Luce Guilbeault: le bel hommage d'un fils à sa mère" [Luce Guilbeault: the beautiful homage of a son to his mother]. (in French). Quebecor. Retrieved 20 November 2017.
  8. ^ ""Ma mère dans l'œil de mon père - Luce Guilbeault photographiée par Guy Borremans" à découvrir en librairies" ["My mother in the eye of my father - Luce Guilbeault photographed by Guy Borremans" to discover in bookstores] (in French). 6 October 2016. Retrieved 20 November 2017.