One of the most important movie figures ever to live to the age of 100, French actress Danielle Darrieux, died Tuesday in Bois-le-Roi, France.
Darrieux, who had turned 100 earlier this year, was said to have been ill following a fall.
The number "100" suited her — she was also the veteran of well over 100 films and TV appearances, debuting in 1931 not long after the advent of talkies in Le bal, and making her final on-screen appearance in the 2010 telefilm C'est toi c'est tout. She also provided her voice for a short film about her life last year, Tournons ensemble, Mademoiselle Darrieux.
The ultimate French wife in a series of successful and at times controversial films of the '50s, some of her finest work appears in Mayerling (1936), La Ronde (1950), Rich, Young and Pretty (1951), Le plaisir (1952), Adorable Creatures (1952), Madame de ... (1953), Rouge et noir (1954), L'amant de Lady Chatterly (1955), Alexander the Great (1956), Les demoiselles de Rochefort (1967) and a late-career highlight, Huit Femmes (2002), the latter of which became an international hit.
Along with her prolific work in film, she was an adroit singer, both in recordings and on the stage, including in a 1995 French production of Harold and Maude and 2003's Oscar et la Dame Rose, her final foray into theater — when she was nearing 90.
Her most internationally known stage performance was as a replacement for Katharine Hepburn (1907-2003) in Coco on Broadway in 1970. She would grace Broadway once more, in 1972's Ambassador.
— UniFrance (@uniFrance) October 19, 2017
Darrieux was given an honorary César Award in 1985, but never won one in competition in spite of her position as one of France's most legendary film stars.
Son talent, sa générosité ont illuminé le cinéma français. Danielle Darrieux savait tout jouer avec un naturel prodigieux.
— Francoise Nyssen (@FrancoiseNyssen) October 19, 2017