Known For: Acting · Birthday: 1917-10-29
75 Movies · 3 TV Series
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Israël Constantine was born in Los Angeles to Jewish immigrant parents, a Russian father and Polish mother; his father was a jeweller. In pursuit of a singing career, he went to Vienna for voice training, but when he returned to America his career didn't take off and he started taking work as a film extra. Having failed to make a career in America, Constantine returned to Europe in the early 1950s and started singing and performing in Parisian cabarets. He was noticed by Edith Piaf, who cast him in the musical La p'tite Lili. Constantine also helped Piaf with translations for her 1956 album La Vie en Rose/Édith Piaf Sings In English, so that he has songwriting credits on the English versions of some of her most famous songs (especially "Hymne à l'amour"/"Hymn to Love").In the 1950s Constantine was a star in France due to his role as the hard-boiled detective/secret agent Lemmy Caution (from Peter Cheyney's novels) in a series of French B-pictures, including La môme vert-de-gris (1953), Cet homme est dangereux (1953), Ça va barder (1953), Je suis un sentimental (1955), Lemmy pour les dames (1961) and Your Turn, Darling (1963). When not playing Lemmy Caution, Constantine's character would still typically be a suave-talking, seductive, smooth guy, although he often played this for laughs. He turned his accent and perceived American cockiness to advantage in such roles, and later described his film persona as having been "James Bond before James Bond".One of his most notable roles was in Jean-Luc Godard's Alphaville (1965), in which he reprised (to a more radical end) the role of Lemmy Caution, in a departure from the style of his other films. His box-office appeal in France waned in the mid-1960s. Having remarried to a German television producer, he eventually relocated to Germany, where he worked as a character actor, appearing in German TV dramas as well as film. Constantine later claimed he had never taken his acting career seriously, as he considered himself to be a singer by trade, and had been an actor strictly for the money. He nevertheless worked with directors including Godard and Rainer Werner Fassbinder, and his last notable film appearance was in Lars Von Trier's Europa in 1991. He had taken up the part of Lemmy for the last time in the same year, in Godard's experimental film Germany Year 90 Nine Zero.
Constantine was married three times, to Helene Musil (1942-1976, divorced), with whom he had three children, Dorothea Gibson (1977, divorced), and the film producer Maya Faber-Jansen (1979–1993, Constantine's death), with whom he had one child. His daughter Tanya Constantine, born in 1943, is a photographer. His daughter Barbara Constantine, born in 1955, is a writer. His son Lemmy Constantine, born in 1957, is also a singer and actor. His daughter Mia Constantine, born in 1981, is a theater director.
Movies & TV Series
Postwar Germany, 1945. Leopold Kessler, an American of German descent, works as a sleeping car conductor for the Zentropa railway line. When he meets Katharina Hartmann, the railroad owner's daughter,...
Germany Year 90 Nine Zero
The supremely world-weary Lemmy Caution, last seen in Godard's "Alphaville" (France/1965), has several strange encounters while trying to make his way from the former East Germany to "the west."
2 Movies · 1 TV Series
Helsinki Napoli - All Night Long
Alex is a Finnish taxi driver in Berlin. One evening pits two men feel comfortable in his taxi with a briefcase full of money, but unfortunately for Alex's money stolen and a group of gangsters are at...
Freckled Max and the Spooks
A parody of Frankensteinian stories. It is a story of a little boy, an orphan who arrives at the Castle of Count Frankenstein - a world inhabited by mysterious and sometimes a bit ridiculous scary cre...
Frankenstein's Aunt is the protagonist of three novels - two by Allan Rune Pettersson and a seven-episode TV miniseries based on the first one. The story is a humorous homage to the Universal Horror F...
1 Movie · 1 TV Series
Springtime in Vienna
Martin Powolny, a down and out actor, calls himself Tiger. He lives in a tree house and practices his characteristic yell. An offer to make a film and an air-travel ticket entice him into the big city...
Neapolitan Boy in New York
Flight To Berlin
In this enigmatic thriller, Susannah (Tusse Silberg) is suddenly herded out of an apartment in the middle of the night and brought to a police station for extensive questioning about why she was in a ...
Exit... But No Panic
A guy having sex with a woman on a rooftop – just to get her coffee-machine.
Carnapping - Ordered, Stolen and Sold
When designer Robert Meering returns from vacation, he discovers the company he worked for unexpectedly went bankrupt so he decides to visit his old boss. His former employer Banninger liquidated the ...
The musician Udo Lindenberg (played by himself) is kidnapped during the party after a concert. Nobody realises this until the next day, when he doesn't show up in time for a rehearsal. Since the polic...
The Long Good Friday
In the late 1970s, Cockney crime boss Harold Shand, a gangster trying to become a legitimate property mogul, has big plans to get the American Mafia to bankroll his transformation of a derelict area o...
Ticket of No Return
A sartorially resplendent woman of few words arrives in Berlin with plans to live out the rest of her days as a drunkard.
The Third Generation
A mogul merrily funds terrorists to boost his computer sales, by panicking West German government and industry c. 1980, as the third generation of Western European left-wing activists forms, after cri...
1 Movie · 1 TV Series
In this comedy, Iris Berben plays a mysterious, supernaturally beautiful girl from another planet, who confuses and flusters the men on earth, where she has landed. The men follow her wherever she goe...
A biochemistry professor finds an old manuscript with structure and formula of immortality drug.
Beware of a Holy Whore
Tensions between members of a film crew build while they wait for the arrival of the director and star to arrive on location.
Attack of the Robots
A mad scientist uses his army of mechanical monsters to control people who have Type O blood.
Residence for Spies
Ms. Pendleton is the commander-in-chief of a women's training camp for western spies, recently established in Turkey. CIA agent Leyton receives a mission, to discover and destroy an ennemy group opera...
An American private-eye, arrives in Alphaville, a futuristic city on another planet which is ruled by an evil scientist named Von Braun, who has outlawed love and self-expression.
Nick Carter et le trèfle rouge
Ces dames s'en mêlent
Make Your Bets, Ladies
A famous American secret service agent tries to rescue a German 17 year old prodigy scientist who has been captured by the Russians.
Jeff Gordon, Secret Agent
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How Do You Like My Sister?
The brother of a delinquent schoolboy falls in love with his teacher and intrigues to make him reciprocate her love, and succeeds.
Lucky Jo and his three friends are little criminals, who try to live from small burglaries. But they never have luck - ever so often something inpredictable happens to Jo and gets one of them arrested...
Laissez tirer les tireurs
Nick Carter va tout casser
The Seven Deadly Sins
One of the seven deadly sins is dramatized in a short film by seven directors. In "Anger," a domestic argument over a fly in the Sunday soup leads to a nuclear war. There is a movie called "Sloth."
A Swelled Head
A man inherits an old house in a very bad condition. With the help of a young mechanic, he begins to renovate this house.
We Will Go to Deauville
Comical adventures of two pairs of friends during their stay in Deauville, Normandy.
Cléo from 5 to 7
Agnès Varda eloquently captures Paris in the sixties with this real-time portrait of a singer set adrift in the city as she awaits test results of a biopsy. A chronicle of the minutes of one woman’s l...
Lemmy pour les dames
Jean-Luc Godard's short segment made for “Les sept péchés capitaux”.
Lemmy Caution has been assigned by Interpol to work as a double agent. Little does he know how many spies are on to this deception and how dangerous his assignment has become.
The Fiancés of the Bridge Mac Donald
A subtitle warns, "beware of dark sunglasses." Anna and her lover, whose looks in bowler and bow tie are reminiscent of a young Buster Keaton, kiss chastely on a bridge overlooking the Seine. He dons ...
Bombs on Monte Carlo
In Monte Carlo, a captain tries to raise the money to pay his crew at the gaming table, and meets and falls in love with a Queen.
There's Going to Be a Party
FBI agent John Lewis travels in Europe, from Paris to Lisbon, trying to locate a disappeared fellow secret-agent, Mark Lemoine. Soon he has trouble with a violant gang, and is involved with a young Fr...
Women Are Like That
The Treasure of San Teresa
After World War II, an ex-spy returns to Germany to search for a cache of jewels he hid in a Czechoslovakian convent.
Riff Raff Girls
Vicky de Berlin, a female gangster, haunted by wartime memories , runs a floating night-club in Brussel. Marcel, her partner and lover, is in charge of the banknotes forgery manufacture concealed in t...
A flying boat has to ditch off an island in the Pacific. Along with the injured owner-pilot the passengers include a policeman and his smuggler prisoner, a slimey limey witness against him, a physicis...
Yours Truly, Blake
Larry Blake is an American airline pilot who loves women and ... trouble! Wherever he goes troubles indeed follow, like this time in Paris. On vacation in the French capital, the happy American decide...
Dames Get Along
Les femmes s'en balancent is a 1954 French film directed by Bernard Borderie
FBI Agent Lemmy is sent after a missing two million in Casablanca while mob boss mistress Carlotta plays both sides of the law.
This Man Is Dangerous
Eddie Constantine as Lemmy Caution.
Egypt by Three
Three tales of life on the Nile River reveal love and vengeance, religion and deception. Each atmospheric vignette offers an eye-opening take on the culture, attitudes and religion of the Middle East...