American audiences may know him from such films as 1965’s Once a Thief. (He and costar Ann-Margret are pictured above.)
The fact is that in the late 1950’s through the 1970’s, Alain Delon was regarded as one of (if not the) most beautiful leading men in international movies. (Some referred to him as “the male Brigitte Bardot.”)
No question, A BIG star, especially in Europe.
Born in the southwest Paris suburb of Sceaux, Delon survived a trouble childhood and a stint as a paratrooper in the French military during the Indochina War of the 1950’s. He then worked in a number of odd jobs including that of a porter in the famous Parisian food market, Les Halles. The story goes that he was spotted by a talent agent, and thrust into his first movie by 1957.
His career paralleled the big French “new wave” cinema of the early 1960s. His specialties: bad boys and gangsters. His style was cool, feline, sometimes exuding clinical nastiness. (Delon’s rumored offscreen connections in the European underworld dogged him for years.)
Now, in his early eighties, Delon remains a national icon in France. He’s been an acclaimed actor on both sides of the Atlantic, a director of four titles and producer of 38 more. His career spans more than a half century sparked in part by Delon’s international celebrity.
He is well known, obviously, in France. Let’s see how much you know about him. As usual, Quiz questions today, answers tomorrow. Here we go:
1) Question: Delon was considered something of a “pretty boy” actor in his prime, but he often said his favorite American actor was one who could not be so described. Who is this American actor? a) Rock Hudson; b) Humphrey Bogart; c) John Garfield; or d) Spencer Tracy.
2) Question: Delon has led a complicated private life, and he was famously in love with which one of these famous actresses? a) Elke Sommer; b) Anita Ekberg; c) Sophia Loren; or d) Romy Schneider.
3) Question: One of Delon’s lesser known American films is 1972’s Scorpio in which he plays an international spy opposite which one of the following pairs of veteran actors? a) Burt Lancaster and Paul Scofield; b) James Stewart and Lino Ventura; c) Jean Gabin and Tab Hunter; or d) Warren Beatty and Gerard Depardieu.
4) Question: Delon never was even nominated for an Oscar. a) True; or b) False.
5) Question: The careers of Delon and Marlon Brando briefly intersected in connection with which one of the following movies? a) The Godfather; b) The Nightcomers; c) The Missouri Breaks; or d) Last Tango in Paris.