More Jean Rochefort Bios & Profiles
Biography #2 (for The Man on the Train)One of France's most popular leading actors, Jean Rochefort's career in film spans five decades and nearly 100 films. Man On The Train represents his seventh film with Patrice Leconte, with whom he has collaborated on such films as the Oscar-nominated Ridicule, Tandem, The Hairdresser's Husband, Tango and The Grand Dukes.
Rochefort trained at the Paris Conservatory, where he was a classmate of his future co-star Jean-Paul Belmondo, and went on to perform in a Left Bank cabaret. He made his film debut in the 1950s, and soon after gained recognition for his supporting role in Philippe de Broca's Cartouche, going on to star in de Broca's Les Tribulations d'un Chinois en Chine and his crime comedy La Diable par la Queue. He then garnered international acclaim for the hit comedy The Tall Blond Man With One Black Shoe, in which he played Toulouse, an overly ambitious spy for the Secret Police.
This marked the start of a continuing collaboration with director Yves Robert, with Rochefort next starring in Robert's The Return of the Big Blond and Hail the Artist with Marcello Mastroianni. He later starred in Robert's sex comedy Pardon Mon Affaire, which was also a hit in the U.S., and reprised his role for the sequel Pardon Mon Affaire, Too. Rochefort also drew accolades and the Cesar Award for Best Supporting Actor for his work in Bertrand Tavernier's directorial debut, The Watchmaker, this time as a police inspector who befriends the father of an accused murderer. Other directors with whom he has worked include Luis Bunuel (The Phantom of Liberty), Claude Chabrol (Dirty Hands) and Bertrand Blier (Cool, Calm and Collected). His performance in Pierre Lary's spy movie L'Indescretion won him the Best Actor Award at the Montreal Film Festival.
He made his Hollywood film debut in the comedy Who is Killing The Great Chefs of Europe?, starred in French Postcards and joined the comedy ensemble of Robert Altman's Ready to Wear, as the Prefect of Police. His most recent films include Maurizio Nichetti's Honolulu Baby, the biopic Rembrandt, the documentary Lost in La Mancha (the story of Terry Gilliam's aborted film The Man Who Killed Don Quixote in which Rochefort was to star until he was plagued with injuries), Bernie Bonvoisin's Blanche and the forthcoming Le Grand Appartement. He also appeared in the mini-series The Count of Monte Christo with Gerard Depardieu and Francis Veber's global hit farce The Closet with Depardieu and Daniel Auteuil. In 1999, Rochefort was awarded the Cesar Award for career achievement.
Bio courtesy Paramount Classics for "The Man on the Train" (11-May-2003)