Sunday, 8 August 2010

BRUNO CREMER (1929-2010)

[21.16 - French Time] French movie and television actor Bruno Cremer has died this week, report several French media outlets. He was 80.

Brilliant lead or character actor, Bruno Cremer worked for movie directors like Pierre Schoendoerffer (La 317ème section), René Clément (Is Paris Burning?), Luchino Visconti (Lo Straniero) Patrice Chéreau (Flesh of the Orchid), Costa-Gravas, Philippe Labro, etc. Television offered him two of his best roles: mafia mastermind Antonio Espinosa in Italian crime drama La Piovra 4 (1989) plus two of its sequels and, above all, Georges Simenon's commissaire Jules Maigret.

From 1991 to 2005 Cremer played commissaire Maigret in 54 episodes adapted from Simenon's novels. Unfortunately, because of health issues, he had to be dubbed by Belgian actor and dubbing artist Vincent Grass (Doctor Cornelius in Prince Caspian and French-speaking voice of Peter Firth or Stephen Fry) for his final episode.

Set in the fifties, unlike the previous French TV adaptation (which starred Jean Richard between 1967 and 1990), the Maigret starring Bruno Cremer is an enduring favourite among reruns of French pubcaster France 2 - co-producer of the series. France 2 is actually airing it again this summer.

Cremer will remain the most credible titular of the role. The French movie and television industries lose a familiar and popular face.

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