• France edition
 
The Artist sweeps the board at Oscars

The Artist sweeps the board at Oscars

Published: 27 Feb 2012 07:54 GMT+01:00
Updated: 27 Feb 2012 07:54 GMT+01:00

Jean Dujardin on Sunday capped a record awards season run with an Oscar for his turn as a struggling silent film star in "The Artist," becoming the first Frenchman to win an Academy Award for acting.

The first non-Anglo-Saxon film to take the top prize in Oscars history struck gold at the 84th Academy Awards ceremony, earning a total of five golden statuettes including best director.

Other awards came for best original score and best costume design.

"I am the happiest director in the world right now," Hazanavicius said as he accepted his directing prize.

Dujardin -- a 39-year-old already well liked at home for his work on stage and screen -- joins Simone Signoret, Claudette Colbert, Marion Cotillard and Juliette Binoche in the elite club of French Oscar-winning actors.

"I love your country," Dujardin told the Oscars audience as he took the stage for his acceptance speech, the latest of many awards shows at which he has triumphed over the last few months.

His poignant performance as George Valentin in Michel Hazanavicius' charming ode to the silent film era has already earned him a Cannes festival prize, a Golden Globe, a BAFTA and an independent Spirit film award.

Overall, the film took home five Oscars on Sunday including awards for best picture and best director Hazanavicius.

"I've already won. Just being here, with all of these actors, these artists, is already huge!" Dujardin said in the run-up to Sunday's Oscars ceremony, with a mix of modesty and candor that has seduced Hollywood.

Born in the suburbs of Paris in 1972, Dujardin discovered a talent for acting during his mandatory military service. He cut his teeth in the French capital's cafe-theaters, before launching a comedic acting troupe.

Luck struck in 1999 when he was chosen to star in the televised serial "Un gars et une fille" ("A Guy and a Girl") with Alexandra Lamy, who became his wife in 2009.

For four years, the pair charmed viewers on France 2 and gave Dujardin the launch pad he needed.

Movie producers snapped him up, and from 2002 to 2004, he starred in a series of comedies including "Toutes les filles sont folles" ("All Girls Are Crazy") and "Les cles de bagnole" ("The Car Keys").

His breakthrough came in 2005 with "Brice de Nice" ("The Brice Man"), a film about a surfer dude character he had created on stage a decade earlier. Some 4.3 million people saw the film, and Dujardin became a bankable star.

He took on more serious roles as a cop searching for his daughter's killer in "Contre-enquete" ("Counter-Investigation"), and as a writer visited by the incarnation of his cancer in "Le bruit des glacons" ("The Clink of Ice").

The turn towards dramatic films however did not dissuade Dujardin, known for his seductive smile, from taking on other comedic fare.

In 2006, he worked for the first time with Hazanavicius in the James Bond parody "OSS 117: Cairo, Nest of Spies," which spawned a sequel, "OSS 117: Lost in Rio."

An actor faithful to his directors, he also reconnected with "Brice" director James Huth for "Hellphone" in 2007 and "Lucky Luke" two years later.

Often compared to Jean-Paul Belmondo for his ability to bring to life Everyman characters with humour and panache, Dujardin shared the screen with the great French actor in 2009's "Un homme et son chien" ("A Man and His Dog").

After his Oscar win, most will assume that Dujardin will be tempted by the bright lights of Tinseltown.

But the actor -- whose English is still basic, at best -- said as he promoted his latest film, "Les infideles" ("The Players") that he did not intend to change course right away.

"I am not the one who will decide to launch a career in the United States. I am still a French actor, and I am going to carry on as I always have," he said -- days after signing with a major Hollywood talent agency.

 

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

2012-03-01 19:35:31 by e.boo.r12
I think it would be a huge mistake to think Hollywood is going to give you a good shake. Your best bet is to stay here where you are know and admired. Hollywood is going to serenade you at first, then they will forget who you are just as fast. And when you come back to France, the film industry will consider you a "traitor" for leaving your country and no one will want to hire you.
Today's headlines
IMF board expresses confidence in Lagarde
Christine Lagarde, who revealed she had been charged on Wednesday after being questioned as part of a corruption investigation. Photo: AFP

IMF board expresses confidence in Lagarde

The board of the International Monetary Fund has reiterated its support for Managing Director Christine Lagarde, after a French court placed her under formal investigation in a graft scandal. READ  

Top 10 tips for dealing with your French in-laws
Meeting your French in-laws doesn't have to be scary. Photo: AFP

Top 10 tips for dealing with your French in-laws

Even back home meeting the in-laws for the first time is scary, but as a foreigner in France it's doubly stressful. So here's ten tips from the Comme une Française blog to help you survive and even thrive with your new family. READ  

How France compares to Europe:  Unemployment
How does France compare to its neighbours when it comes to unemployment.Photo: Philippe Huguen/AFP

How France compares to Europe: Unemployment

The jobless total in France hit a new record high this month with 3.424 million people out of work. Is it only in France that records are being broken? The Local takes a look at why the numbers are more positive in at least some of France's neighbours. READ  

Frenchman flips out over reclined seat on US flight
A Frenchman freaked out on a US plane over a reclined seat and is in big trouble. Photo: Doug/Flickr

Frenchman flips out over reclined seat on US flight

A Parisian man faces jail after losing his cool on a France-bound flight from the US over a passenger who reclined his seat just a bit too far. His outburst comes on the heels of the now infamous “Knee Defender” melee aboard another American plane. READ  

French police in race to find sick British boy
Ashya King, who police in France are desperately trying to track down. Photo: YouTube/Naveed King

French police in race to find sick British boy

Police in France and Britain faced a race against time on Friday in their hunt to find a five-year-old boy with a brain tumour who officials in France believe was "kidnapped" from a UK hospital by his family. READ  

French women's safety fears 'due to inequality'
A third of French women say they afraid to walk in their neighbourhood. Photo: Takato Marul/Flickr

French women's safety fears 'due to inequality'

Recent studies suggest women in France do not feel safe walking the streets of their neighbourhoods and many are afraid of walking around Paris at night. Some argue that gender inequality in the country is partly to blame. READ  

Feature - Wingsuit flying
Thrill-seekers risking life and limb in French Alps
Wingsuit flying has taken off in France despite dangers. Photo: Philippe Desmazes/AFP

Thrill-seekers risking life and limb in French Alps

A mountain in the French Alps has become a hot spot for the high-risk and often deadly extreme sport of wingsuit flying. And the seemingly hairbrained alpine activity where "there is no margin for error" attracts a lot of "dangerous egos". READ  

British killer escapes from hospital in France
French police have launched a manhunt for an escaped British killer. Photo: Philippe Huguen/AFP

British killer escapes from hospital in France

A mentally ill British man is on the run in France after escaping from a psychiatric hospital, where he was forcibly committed after beating a man to death with a four-kilo weight. READ  

Does France really suffer from a brain drain?
France may not be suffering from a brain drain after all, but it's not as attractive as the UK or Germany. Photo: Leaving.

Does France really suffer from a brain drain?

The latest European Union figures cast a bit of doubt on worries the moribund French economy is prompting a mass brain drain. However the stats do suggest France is far less attractive than the UK and Germany when it comes to certain professions. READ  

French cities struggle with bedbug infestations
Bed bugs are biting in France. Photo: Shutterstock

French cities struggle with bedbug infestations

The infestation of French cities by bed bugs is worse than ever before with hygiene services overwhelmed, according to reports. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
The French words you can't translate literally
National
Ten things you need to know about France's economics whizzkid
International
VIDEO: Watch the top five street scams to avoid in Paris
Politics
Take a look at the bulging to-do list that awaits France's new government
Politics
Six questions for France after Hollande ousts rebels
International
Choosing schools in France: Do you go international or French?
Gallery
From kissing to bad-mouthing: Ten ways expats in France drive you mad
Culture
Ten things you need to know about the Liberation of Paris:
Travel
Watch this impressive time lapse video and you'll want to move to Paris
National
Veiled Muslim woman on a French beach prompts politician's angry rant
Travel
Forget Paris and Provence where are the least touristy areas of France?
Gallery
IN PICTURES: The battle to liberate Paris from the Nazis
National
What France means to you in just one tweet
National
15 French 'false friends' you need to watch out for
International
12 reasons to invest in Paris and seven not to
National
French hamlet 'Death to Jews' mulls name change
National
French tourist caught in Pompeii brothel romp
International
'Forget the Anglo-media's image of France, the reality is much different'
Culture
VIDEO: Francophile Robin Williams enjoyed poking fun at the French
Travel
Six reasons why France is the world's top tourist destination
International
Remembering the 'forgotten campaign' in the liberation of France
Gallery
VIDEO: French bucket list - The 12 best things to do in France
International
Do three French cities deserve to be in top 10 "World 's Most Unfriendly"?
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se