Hamidou Benmessaoud (Arabic: حميدو بنمسعود ; 2 August 1935 – 19 September 2013), best known as Amidou, was a Moroccan-French film, television, and stage actor. Born in Rabat, at 17 Amidou moved to Paris to attend the CNSAD. In 1968 he made his debut on stage, in Jean Genet's Les paravents.Amidou was best known for his association with director Claude Lelouch, with whom he shot eleven films, including Lelouch's film debut Le propre de l'homme (1960). He made his debut in a Moroccan film in 1969, starring in Soleil de printemps directed by Latif Lahlou. His career included roles in Spaghetti Westerns like Buddy Goes West and several American productions, including William Friedkin's Sorcerer, John Frankenheimer's Ronin and John Huston's Escape to Victory.In 1969, Amidou was awarded best actor at the Rio de Janeiro International Film Festival for his role in Life Love Death by Claude Lelouch, and later won best actor awards at the Cairo Film Festival (for Pursuit by Leila Triquie) and at the Tangier Film Festival (for Rachid Boutounes' Here and There). In 2005 he received, at the hands of Martin Scorsese, a Lifetime Career Award at the International Film Festival of Marrakech. He was also the first Moroccan actor to have won an acting award at the National Conservatory of Dramatic Art.Amidou died on 19 September 2013 in Paris, France because of an undisclosed illness.