Pinoteau, Claude


Pinoteau, Claude
(1925- )
   Director and screenwriter. Claude Pinoteau was born in Boulogne-sur-Seine. He began his career in cinema in the early 1950s as an assistant director to such filmmakers as Jean Cocteau, Henri Decoin, Jean-Pierre Melville, Max Ophuls, and Henri Verneuil. Among his credits as assistant director are such films as Melville's Les Enfants terribles (1950), Cocteau's Orphée (1950), which stars Jean Marais, Gilles Grangier's L'Amant de paille (1951), Decoin and Jean Delannoy's Les Secrets d'Alcove (1952), which stars Bernard Blier, Jeanne Moreau, and Martine Carol, Ophiïls's Lola Montés (1955), which also stars Carol, Verneuil's classic film Mélodie en sous-sol (1963), which stars Jean Gabin and Alain Delon, and Claude Lelouch's L'Aventure, c'est l'aventure (1972), which stars Lino Ventura and Jacques Brel.
   In the late 1960s, Pinoteau began working as a screenwriter as well as an assistant director. He contributed to the scripts for such films as Lelouch's Un homme qui me plaît (1969) and Le voyou (1970). Fairly early in his career, Pinoteau transitioned to directing. His first films were shorts, but he went on to release his first feature-length film Le silencieux, starring Ventura, in 1973. Actress Isabelle Adjani received one of her first major roles in Pinoteau's second feature, La gifle (1974), which won the prestigious Prix Louis-Delluc.
   Following La gifle, Pinoteau released Le grand escogriffe (1976) and L'homme en colére (1979). Both were fairly successful; however, the director's biggest commercial success to date is La boum (1980), which sold more movie tickets than any other French film released during the same year. La boum starred Sophie Marceau, Claude Brasseur, and Brigitte Fossey. Director and screenwriter Danièle Thompson collaborated on the script, as she would for some of his later films, including the sequel La Boum 2, which was one of the top five French films of 1982. Pinoteau later directed La Septiéme cible (1984), which also featured Ventura. Marceau starred again in L'étudiante (1988), a film focusing on light youthful themes. Vincent Perez, a popular actor with young audiences, led the cast of La neige et le feu (1991). Pinoteau's Cache cash (1994) similarly features youthful protagonists; this time they are two young boys. His Les palmes de M. Schutz (1997), adapted from the play about Marie and Pierre Curie by Jean-Noël Fenwick, stars Isabelle Adjani, Charles Berling, and Philippe Noiret.

Historical Dictionary of French Cinema. . 2007.

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