Arnaud Desplechin

Arnaud Desplechin

Born and raised in Roubaix, France, Arnaud Desplechin always had a desire to make movies for a living. As a child, he and his brother would escape to the local cinema and watch films for hours on end, as he dreamt of one day directing his own feature film. With that goal in mind, Desplechin enrolled in the film program at the University of Paris III: Sorbonne Nouvelle where he studied the mechanics of camerawork and directing. After graduating in 1984, Desplechin made three highly regarded short films that were inspired by the novels of Belgian writer Jean Ray. Despite the praise of those short films, however, Desplechin failed to secure the funding he needed to make his debut feature. To make ends meet, Desplechin picked up various freelance jobs as a cameraman. Then in 1990, Desplechin finally secured the financing to make his 54-minute debut, "La vie des morts." The film won the Jean Vigo Prize for Short Films, and was also screened at the Cannes Film Festival. Two years later, Desplechin followed up the success of that film with "The Sentinel." A dark thriller, "The Sentinel" premiered to wide acclaim at the 1992 Cannes Film Festival, and proved that Desplechin was a serious filmmaker to be reckoned with. He made several more films over the course of the next two decades, most notably "My Sex Life or How I Got into an Argument," "Esther Kahn," and "A Christmas Tale" (2008). Then, after a five-year absence from filmmaking, Desplechin directed "Jimmy P" in 2013. That film, which was his second English language movie, was nominated for the prestigious Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival, thus proving that despite a brief absence, Desplechin hadn't lost his magic touch. In 2015 he returned to familiar territory with "My Golden Years," which was a prequel to his hit comedy-drama from 1996, "My Sex Life or How I Got into an Argument." Once again, "My Golden Years" had its world premiere at Cannes, becoming one of the most popular debuts at the 2015 festival.