French New Wave Film Director Claude Chabrol Dies Aged 80

Claude Chabrol, a pioneering film director of the French “New Wave” movement of the 1950s and 1960s, died today. He was 80.

“He was a great cineaste who showed humor and truculence, both in his films and in his life,” President Nicolas Sarkozy said on television from Montignac, southwest France. “He’ll be missed.”

Chabrol’s first film, “Le Beau Serge,” was released in 1959 and won the Grand Prix at the Locarno Film Festival. Portraying the dullness of life in a provincial village, it is often considered the first film in the New Wave movement that included directors Francois Truffaut and Jean-Luc Godard, Agence France-Presse said. Eric Rohmer, another fellow New Wave director, died in January.

In total, Chabrol made 58 films, including Violette Noziere and Madame Bovary, plus more than 20 for television, according to the Journal du Dimanche. His final work, “Bellamy,” starring Gerard Depardieu, appeared in 2008.

Born in Paris on June 24, 1930, Chabrol married three times. He leaves behind four children.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mark Deen in Paris at

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