Jeanne Moreau, French New Wave Icon, Dead at 89

French film legend Jeanne Moreau dies at 89

The renowned French actress's death was confirmed by the mayor of the Paris district where the star was residing, Variety reported.

Paying tribute to her, President Emmanuel Macron said Moreau had "embodied cinema" and she was a free spirit who "always rebelled against the established order". In her home country, Moreau was and remains an institution, the Sphinx of le Cine. Four years later, she was awarded a BAFTA Fellowship for her lifetime's body of work.

She broke through in 1958 with Louis Malle's Les Amants, or The Lovers, a modern version of Madame Bovary about a bored wife who drives off with a virtual stranger - including a scene so erotic for the time that the French government almost banned the film.

Moreau's Viva Maria! co-star Brigitte Bardot also shared her sadness over the actress' passing, posting a statement in which she said, "Jeanne Moreau was swept away too soon by the whirlwind of life". Being in the audience I felt, even the first time, that my place wasn't there in the dark. She was a staple at the Cannes Film Festival, as well as the global film circuit. Luckily, we have her bountiful filmography of over 100 films and television appearances to keep us company.

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She worked with Orson Welles on a number of film projects, starring opposite Anthony Perkins in his adaptation of Kafka's The Trial.

Jeanne Moreau is survived by her son, the actor Jerome Richard.

She was, in the late 1970s, married to the U.S. director William Friedkin, who, with The French Connection, inveigled New Wave techniques into American cinema.

Our thoughts are with Jeanne's loved ones during this time. Her love affair with Malle, in addition to well-publicized romances linking her to Truffaut, her "Mademoiselle" director Tony Richardson, "Monte Walsh" co-star Lee Marvin and designer Pierre Cardin, would also become part of her off-screen legend.

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She was also married to William Friedkin, the Oscar-winning director of "The French Connection" and "The Exorcist", from 1977 to 1979.

She had a busy career before Jules et Jim pushed her towards an elevated level of celebrity. "When I am infatuated, it impacts my pleasure in acting", she told Playboy in 1965. In 1997, she directed a third film, Solstice.

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