With Simone Signoret and Jeanne Moreau, Annie Girardot was one of the major female stars in France during the 1960s and 70s. With her gamine-like sensuality, the actress first became established as a stage comedienne. In contrast, her film roles, notably those for directors Claude Lelouch and Andre Cayatte tapped a darker quality, casting her as women of dubious morality who seemed doomed to a violent end. Girardot first gained international attention with Luchino Visconti's intensely dramatic family saga, "Rocco and His Brothers" (1960). Lelouch first utilized her as Yves Montand's estranged wife in "Vivre pour vivre/Live for Life" (1967) and she went on to appear opposite Philippe Noiret in several emotionally charged role, including "La Vieille fille" (1971) and "Tendre Poulet" (1977). Girardot won a Best Actress Cesar for her portrayal of a contemporary physician facing more trials than a typical soap opera heroine in "Docteur Francoise Gailland/No Time for Breakfast" (1975). A venture to Hollywood in the Barbra Streisand vehicle "All Night Long" (1981) proved misguided. Girardot returned to her homeland where she has continued to grace features as diverse as Michel Legrand's autobiographical "Cinq jours en juin/Five Days in June" (1989) and Lelouch's contemporary riff on "Les Miserables" (1995).
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