Hollywood, France Pay Tribute to ‘Moon Knight’ Star Gaspard Ulliel: ‘He Was Equally Brilliant and Talented’


Hollywood and the French film industry are paying tribute to French actor Gaspard Ulliel.

The actor, who stars in Marvel’s upcoming “Moon Knight” series, died on Wednesday following a skiing accident. He was 37.

Gaspard began acting while still at school. At the age of 12 he appeared in French TV movie “Une Femme En Blanc” (“A Woman in White”) in an uncredited role. In 2007 he took on his first major English-speaking role in “Hannibal Rising,” playing Hannibal, and in 2014 played fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent in the critically acclaimed film “Saint Laurent.”

He will make one of his final on-screen appearances in Marvel’s upcoming Disney Plus series “Moon Knight,” in which Ulliel played Midnight Man opposite Oscar Isaac.

A spokesperson for Disney told Variety: “We are deeply saddened to learn of the tragic passing of our friend and colleague Gaspard Ulliel. Our thoughts are with his family and friends during this time.”

Xavier Dolan, who directed him “It’s Only The End of The World, posted a moving tribute in French on Instagram, saying “It’s unbelievable, absurd, and so painful to even think of writing these words. Your discreet laugher, your caring gaze. Your scar. Your talent. Your listening skill. Your whispers, your kindness. All these personality traits that emanated from a shining softness. Your whole being transformed my life, a being that loved deeply and that I will always love. I can’t say anything more. I feel drained, shaken by your (death).”

Martin Scorsese, who directed Ulliel in a 2010 commercial for the Chanel cologne Bleu, told IndieWire in a note that he “was so impressed by (Ulliel’s) dedication and his intelligence.” “He loved the cinema, and I know that he would have been an interesting filmmaker if he’d lived to realize his dream.”

Meanwhile, Thierry Fremaux, director of the Cannes Film Festival, also shared his condolences. Ulliel was a mainstay on the red steps in Cannes, where the actor’s movies were often premiering.

“Gaspard belonged to this new generation of actors who were making tomorrow’s French cinema. He knew how to select his roles and shaped his career which filled every promise,” Fremaux told Variety.

“Each appearance on the red carpet, from ‘La Princesse de Montpensier’ to ‘It’s Only The End of the World’ illustrated his presence, both discreet and full of kindness. He was equally brilliant and talented. He gave a lot and we’ll always remember him.”

France’s culture minister Roselyne Bachelot spoke on the French news channel BFMTV saying she was “devastated like many French people” about the death of Ulliel which she described as “so unfair.” “Such a brilliant actor who was reaped by the sickle of death at the peak of his career. For almost 20 years, he was present in our lives with magnificent performances, winning his first Cesar for best male newcomer with “A Very Long Engagement,” said Bachelot.

French Prime Minister Jean Castex paid tribute to the actor, writing on Twitter: “Gaspard Ulliel grew up with cinema and cinema grew with him. They loved each other madly. It is with a heavy heart that we will no longer see his most beautiful interpretations. We have lost a French actor.”

Pierre Niney — who also portrayed Saint Laurent in a competing movie that came out in 2014 — said of Ulliel: “Broken heart. Gaspard was benevolence and kindness. Beauty and talent. Thoughts to his family.”

“The Artist” star Jean Dujardin and Guillaume Canet, the actor-director of “Blood Ties” and “Tell No One,” each posted a picture of Uliiel with a caption reading simply “Gaspard.”

Alexandra Lamy, the French actor of “No Second Chance,” wrote a heartfelt note on Twitter, saying, “A heavy heart. From you I keep only these moments of joy, we laugh so much. You embodied beauty, kindness, talent, elegance, we will miss you so much. All my support to your family and loved ones!”