French actor and screenwriter Jean-Pierre Bacri died of cancer in Paris on Monday at the age of 69. Bacri’s death was confirmed by his agent, Anne Alvares-Correa, to AFP.
Bacri, whose career started in the 80s, delivered, along with Agnes Jaoui, his wife and lifelong friend, films and plays such as “The Taste of Others” and “Kitchen and Outbuildings,” which gained cult status in France. And he never stopped working. He was celebrated by many different generations of audiences and artists for his sharp humor, sense of observation and uncompromising integrity.
Bacri’s popularity could be observed through the success of most films he headlined. His most recent roles include “C’est la vie,” a 2017 comedy-drama directed by Olivier Nakache and Éric Toledano, and “Place Publique,” which he co-wrote with Jaoui, who directed. Together with Jaoui, Bacri created and often starred in films which explored human nature and relationships through dark humor. Bacri excelled at playing deeply flawed, yet endearing characters that everyone could relate to. Bacri also starred in Alain Chabat’s “Didier,” which became a cult comedy and Alain Resnais’s musical “We Know the Song,” which earned him a Cesar award for best supporting actor.
Some of Bacri and Jaoui’s best-known credits include “The Taste of Others,” which was nominated for an Oscar in 2001, won a European Film Award and four Cesar awards, and “Look at Me” which won best screenplay at Cannes and the European Film Awards in 2004. Bacri also won Cesar awards for best screenplay (shared with Jaoui) for “Smoking/No Smoking” and “Family Resemblances.”
Bacri was born on May 24, 1951 in Castiglione in Algeria. His first big breakthrough was the play “Kitchen and Outbuildings,” which he wrote with Jaoui in 1992, and won a Moliere Award before being adapted into a film.
Bacri’s death has struck a chord in France with many filmmakers, actors, industry figures and even France’s president Emmanuel Macron paying him tribute.
Il avait le sens de la fête et le goût des autres. Jean-Pierre Bacri, le plus tendre de nos râleurs s’en est allé.
Comme une image, son humanité laconique et sensible continuera de peupler nos vies. pic.twitter.com/lq8TCgR5Vh
— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) January 18, 2021
Le goût de la vie…
Le sens de la vie …
L’extrême dignité , au bout du chemin…
— Pierre Lescure (@pierrelescure) January 18, 2021
Notre tristesse est immense, quelle chance Jean-Pierre de t’avoir connu. pic.twitter.com/roW1F8oGlI
— Toledano Nakache (@ToledanoNakache) January 18, 2021