09 February 2013

Perrette Pradier (1938 - 2013)

At his Dutch site Het Schimmenrijk, critic Hans Beerekamp informed us that French actress Perrette Pradier (1938 - 2013) passed away on 16 January. The 74-years old actress died of an heart ailment in Rueil-Malmaison, France. In her long career, Pradier appeared mainly in the theatre and on stage. In the early 1960’s she was one of the most promising actresses of the French cinema, but neither her French films nor her international productions made her a star.

Perrette Pradier
French postcard by E.D.U.G., no. 205. Photo: Studio Pietri.

Perrette Pradier
French postcard by E.D.U.G., no. 40. Photo: Sam Lévin.

Most Promising New Actress in France
Perrette Pradier was born as Perrette Marie Mathilde Chevau in Hanoï, Vietnam in 1938. She made her first film appearance in a bit part in the Fernandel comedy Honoré de Marseille (1956, Maurice Regamey). She had a bigger part in the crime film Les Scélérats/The Wretches (1959, Robert Hossein) starring Michèle Morgan. Five years after her film debut, she was awarded the prestigious Prix Suzanne Bianchetti as most promising new actress in France for her performance as Amenita in Au voleur/The Nabob Affair (1960, Ralph Habib) based on a script by Sacha Guitry. That year she gained further recognition for her role as Constance Bonacieux in two films based on The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas père, Les Trois mousquetaires: Les ferrets de la reine/The Fighting Musketeers (1961, Bernard Borderie) and Les Trois mousquetaires: La vengeance de Milady/Vengeance of the Three Musketeers (1961, Bernard Borderie) with Mylène Demongeot as Milady. Throughout the early 1960’s, Pradier appeared in a number of films in her native France, including the crime film Le jeu de la vérité/The Game of Truth (1961, Robert Hossein), the horror thriller La chambre ardente/The Burning Court (1962, Julien Duvivier) with Nadja Tiller, the anthology film Les sept péchés capitaux/The Seven Deadly Sins (1962, Sylvain Dhomme a.o.), and the crime film Des frissons partout/Jeff Gordon, Secret Agent (1964, Raoul André) starring Eddie Constantine. Then she was contracted for a supporting part in the Hollywood production Behold a Pale Horse (1964, Fred Zinnemann) starring Gregory Peck, Anthony Quinn and Omar Sharif. She appeared in such pan-European productions as the spy thriller Furia à Bahia pour OSS 117/OSS 117: Mission for a Killer (1965, André Hunebelle) with Frederick Stafford and Mylène Demongeot, and Estambul 65/That Man in Istanbul (1965, Antonio Isasi-Isasmendi) starring Horst Buchholz and Sylva Koscina. In France she also continued to appear in films, including L'amour à la chaîne/Tight Skirts, Loose Pleasures (1965, Claude de Givray) with Jean Yanne, but she was regularly seen on TV too.

Perrette Pradier (1938 - 2013)
Dutch postcard by Uitgeverij Takken, Utrecht, no. AX 5154.

Perrette Pradier
French collectors card by Éditions P.I., Paris. Photo: Sam Lévin.

Completely Nude
In 1968 Perrette Pradier returned to Hollywood for the Universal Studios thriller House of Cards (1968, John Guillermin) starring George Peppard and Orson Welles. IMDb reviewer dbdumonteil notes that she appeared “completely nude (in the film) probably to please the viewer.” From then on her film appearances became scarcer. After her supporting part in Céleste (1970, Michel Gast) with Jean Rochefort, she mainly appeared on TV. In her long career, she also worked in the theatre, appearing in plays such as La Bonne Addresse (1966) by Marc Camoletti at the Théâtre des Nouveautés, Black Comedy (1967) by Peter Shaffer at the Théâtre Montparnasse, and Le Résident (1985) by Slawomir Mrozek at the Théâtre des Mathurin. She also appeared in the longest running French play ever produced, Boeing Boeing. In the cinema only her voice could be heard during the last decades. As a voice actress she worked for the animation films Les Dalton en cavale/Lucky Luke Contra The Daltons (1983, Joseph Barbera, William Hanna) based on the popular comic Lucky Luke by Morris and Goscinny, and Fiével et le nouveau monde/An American tail (1986, Don Bluth). In 1994, she did the voice of Sarafina in Le Roi Lion, the French version of the Walt Disney Studios animated feature film, The Lion King (1994, Roger Allers, Rob Minkoff). For Disney she worked on several more French versions of their other animation classics. She also gave her voice to the Sci-Fi film Les mille merveilles de l'univers/The Thousand Wonders of the Universe (1997, Jean-Michel Roux) with Tchéky Karyo and Julie Delpy, and to the British-French animation film Igor (1997, Anthony Leondis). She also gave Julie Andrews a French voice in Victor Victoria (1982, Blake Edwards) and she was the French voice of Faye Dunaway as Milady De Winter in Les Trois Mousquetaires/The Three Musketeers (1973, Richard Lester) and On l'appelait Milady/The Four Musketeers: Milady's Revenge (1974, Richard Lester). On TV she was the French voice for Kate Jackson in the TV-series Charlie’s Angels, Glenn Close in The Shield, Jacqueline Bisset in Nip/Tuck, and for many other TV series. Her most recent films as a voice actress were 1001 Pattes/A Bug's Life (1999, John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton), Dinosaure/Dinosaur (2000, Ralph Zondag, Eric Leighton), the Japanese anime Le Château dans le ciel/Tenku no shiro Rapyuta/The Castle in the Sky (2003, Hayao Miyazaki) and Pompoko/Hesei tanuki gassen Pompoko (2006, Isao Takahata). For Raymond/The Shaggy Dog (2006, Brian Robbins) she worked as the director of the French synchronization. In 2013, the 74-years old actress died of an heart ailment in Rueil-Malmaison, France. Perrette Pradier was the mother of actress Vanina Pradier.

An in Russian synchronized scene of Les Trois mousquetaires: Les ferrets de la reine/The Fighting Musketeers (1961). Source: MrMegaaz (YouTube).

Perrette Pradier was the French voice of Medusa in Les Aventures de Bernard et Bianca/The Rescuers (1977, John Lounsbery, Wolfgang Reitherman). Source: brunossj4 (YouTube).

Sources: Hans Beerekamp (Het Schimmenrijk) (Dutch), Wikipedia (French) and IMDb.

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