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Christian Clavier

Christian Clavier

Christian Clavier is a gifted comedic actor and writer who has graced French cinema and theatre with memorable performances for the past twenty-five years. For the past decade, Clavier and fellow actor G6rard Depardieu, have been the most important forces at the French box office.

Clavier began his performing career as part of a successful theatre troupe known as Le Splendid. He and a group of high school friends wanted to become actors and decided that the best way to do that was not to wait for the phone to ring. The friends set out independently to find an audience for their work and, in the late seventies and early eighties, Le Splendid wrote and performed a series of plays in an inexpensive cafe theater setting.

In 1978, one of these popular plays, set in a Club Med-type resort, became the film Les Bronzes, directed by Patrice Leconte. Suddenly, Le Splendid went from performing to crowds of 100 to reaching an audience of millions. The group followed with a sequel called Les Bronz6s du ski and in 1982, made a third Le Splendid film known as Le Pare Noel est une Ordure, directed by Jean-Marie Poire, and was the beginning of the Clavier/Poir6 collaborations that continue to this day.

Clavier and Poire also worked together on stage with the play Panique Au Piazza at the Marigny Theatre in Paris. Poir6 served as artistic director and Clavier starred in this comedy that they co-wrote. They also produced a live television broadcast of the play that was subsequently released on DVD.

Clavier's other stage credits include La Dame de Chez Maxim's, Ginette Lacaze, Un Fil a la Patte and Double Mixte. With Le Splendid he co-wrote and co-starred in such plays as Amours, Coquillages et Crustaces and Le Pare Noel est une Ordure.

Clavier is very well known in Europe for starring in a string of enormously successful comedies he co-wrote with director Jean-Marie Poire. The most famous of these collaborations was released in 1993. Les Visiteurs, also starring Jean Reno, is the highest grossing film in French box office history and was a hit throughout Europe and Asia. That film spawned a record- breaking sequel in 1998 called Les Couloirs Du Temps: Les Visiteurs II.

Other Gaubert/Poire films include Papy Fait De La Resistance, Twist Again A Moscou, Mes Meilleurs Copains and "Operation Corned Beef' co-starring Jean Reno, as well as Les Anges Gardiens co-starring Gerard Depardieu.

Clavier most recently starred with Gerard Depardieu and Roberto Benigni in director Claude Zidi's Asterix et Obelix contre Cesar, a comedy set in the time of the Roman Empire. Based on a very popular comic book in Europe, the film is also known as "Asterix and Obelix vs. Caesar' and is currently in the middle of a very successful European release.

His numerous other European film credits include Jeannot Szwarc's La Vengeance d'une Blonde (Revenge of a Blonde) and Gerard Oury's La Soif de L'or (The Thirst for Gold).

Just Visiting marks Clavier's first English language film. He lives in Paris with his wife, actress Marie-Anne Chazel, and their daughter.

Note: This profile was written in or before 2002.

Christian Clavier Facts

OccupationActor, Screenwriter
BirthdayMay 6, 1952 (69)
BirthplaceParis, France

Selected Filmography

Just Visiting
The Visitors 2
The Visitors
Asterix & Obelix: Mission Cleopatra
The Gerard Depardieu Collection
The Guardian Angels
The Crown Prince
The corned beef operation
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