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Jean Marais

photograph by Carl Van Vechten, 1947
Born Jean-Alfred Villain-Marais
11 December 1913(1913-12-11)
Cherbourg, France
Died 8 November 1998 (aged 84)
Cannes, France
Occupation Actor, director
Years active 1933 - 1996
Spouse(s) Mila Parély (1942-1944)
Domestic partner(s) Jean Cocteau (1937-1963)

Jean-Alfred Villain-Marais (11 December 1913 – 8 November 1998), was a French actor and director.



A native of Cherbourg, France, Marais starred in several movies directed by Jean Cocteau, for a time his lover, most famously Beauty and the Beast (1946) and Orphée (1949).

In the 1950s, Marais became a star of swashbuckling pictures, enjoying great box office popularity in France. He performed his own stunts. In the 1960s, he played the famed villain of the Fantômas trilogy. After 1970, Marais's on-screen performances became few and far between, as he preferred concentrating on his stage work. He kept performing on stage until his eighties, also working as a sculptor. He was featured in the 1995 documentary "Screening at the Majestic", which is included on the 2003 DVD release of the restored print of Beauty and the Beast.[1] Marais appears on the cover sleeve of The Smiths single This Charming Man.

Marais died from cardiovascular disease in Cannes, Alpes-Maritimes. He is interred there at Vallauris cemetery.



  1. ^ The Criterion Collection: Beauty and the Beast by Jean Cocteau

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