Known For: Acting · Birthday: 1940-09-22
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Anna Karina (born Hanne Karin Bayer, 22 September 1940 – 14 December 2019) was a Danish-French film avant garde actress, director, writer, and singer. She was French New Wave director Jean-Luc Godard's muse in the 1960s, performing in several of his films, including The Little Soldier, A Woman Is a Woman, My Life to Live, Bande à part (Band of Outsiders), Pierrot le Fou (Crazy Pete) and Alphaville. For her performance in A Woman Is a Woman, Karina won the Silver Bear Award for Best Actress at the Berlin Film Festival.In 1972, Karina set up a production company for her directorial debut, Vivre ensemble (1973), which screened in the Critics' Week lineup at the 26th Cannes Film Festival. She also directed the French-Canadian film Victoria (2008). In addition to her work in cinema, she worked as a singer, and wrote several novels.Karina was an icon of 1960s cinema, and referred to as the "effervescent free spirit of the French New Wave, with all of the scars that the position entails". The New York Times described her as "one of the screen's great beauties and an enduring symbol of the French New Wave."
While working together on Le Petit Soldat, Karina and Godard began a relationship and married in 1961. Eventually, Karina served as a cinematic muse to Godard, appearing in eight of his films, including Alphaville, bande à part, and Pierrot le Fou, during their five year marriage and after. Karina liked being the muse. "How could I not be honoured?" she told Xan Brooks of The Guardian in 2016. "Maybe it’s too much, it sounds so pompous. But of course I’m always very touched to hear people say that. Because Jean-Luc gave me a gift to play all of those parts. It was like Pygmalion, you know? I was Eliza Doolittle and he was the teacher." At this, she briefly channels Henry Higgins. "By Jove," she says. "I think she’s got it."The couple became, according to The Independent, "one of the most celebrated pairings of the 1960s." A writer for Filmmaker magazine called their work "arguably the most influential body of work in the history of cinema."Despite the critical success, their relationship behind the scenes was described as tumultuous; they fought on film sets, Karina fell ill several times, and Godard was often absent without explanation. One Godard film from this period which does not feature Karina, Contempt (1963), is said to be based on their difficult relationship. The couple divorced in 1965. Karina said in spring 2016 that she and Godard no longer spoke to each other. She described the relationship in an interview with W magazine:It was all very exciting from the beginning. Of course we have a great love story and all that, but we were so different. He was 10 years older than me. He was very strange. He would go away and come back three weeks later ... It was difficult, and I was a young girl, not even 21—at the time Godard was 30. I know he didn't mean to hurt me, but he did. He was never there, he was never coming back, and I never knew where he was. He drove me a bit crazy.After divorcing Godard, Karina remarried three times; she was married to French actors Pierre Fabre from 1968 to 1974 and Daniel Duval from 1978 to 1981, and to American film director Dennis Berry from 1982 until her death. She was asked why she married four times in an interview published on December 15, 2019. The retelling of her response is as follows: The first time, reflects it, Jean-Luc offered me marriage because I was pregnant." Silence. "And maybe also because he loved me." She is badly treated in hospital, which leaves her with an embryo that has died for several months and the final impossibility of being a mother. "It remains very upsetting for me", she said, crying. The fourth time is with Dennis Berry. He asks her hand on a whim on a Sunday in Las Vegas – so the jewelry stores for the ring were closed, she laughs. It is pointed out to him that he did not marry Anna Karina, but Anna Karina-the Love-of-Godard. Twenty years ago, the Swiss filmmaker sent her a six-page letter when she was playing After the rehearsal, according to Bergman. She hasn't heard from him since. "He says that I am an ancient story, but for me, it is always in my heart, and will remain so for life."Karina died at the age of 79 on Saturday, December 14, 2019, at a hospital in Paris. According to her agent, Laurent Balandras, the cause of death was cancer. However, her husband, Dennis Berry, told that the cause was not cancer, but a complication following a muscular rupture.
Hanne Karin Bayer (later known as Anna Karina) was born in Frederiksberg, Denmark. Her mother was a dress shop owner and her father left the family a year after she was born. Karina recalled she met her father three times:"The first time, I was 4 years old, he gave me a banana, I crunched and spat, because I didn't know that I had to remove the skin. The second time, I was still a minor, the meeting was at a train station in London, I was with Jean-Luc, and when he saw me, my father said to me: 'You miss a button' (sic). I yelled in Danish that he was no more my father than any guy in the station. And the third time was in 1963 in Barcelona, I was shooting The Thief of Tibidabo by Maurice Ronet. We have lunch together for twenty minutes, he was with one of his sons, Soren" who was "8 years old, he was very friendly, we talk about everything and Africa. I finally got to know him and I'm happy. He promises to write to me. And since then I wait, I wait, I wait. I'm still waiting for the postcard." She lived with her maternal grandparents for three years, then spent the next four years in foster care before returning to live with her mother. She has described her childhood as "terribly wanting to be loved", and as a child she made numerous attempts to run away from home. Her mother remarried, but her step-father was abusive.She began her career in Denmark, where she sang in cabarets and worked as a model playing in commercials. At age 14, she appeared in a Danish short film by Ib Schmedes, which won a prize at Cannes. In 1958, after a row with her mother, she hitchhiked to Paris.
Movies & TV Series
A ringmaster, his son Max, and a monkey named Johnny are trying hard to make the business bring in money, but it does not work. In the south of France they will meet the neat Natascha. One day when Jo...
Just Like at Home
A man and a kid are discovering beauty in life.
Bread and Chocolate
An Italian immigrant tries to make a new life in Switzerland, taking on a series of increasingly menial jobs in order to do it. He attempts to fit into his new home and society but fails at every turn...
A castaway arrives on an island. He thinks it's uninhabited, but he sees a palace with also a hidden room. Soon he sees some people walking, dressed with old-fashioned clothes. He is afraid because pe...
Appointment in Bray
In 1917, the First World War is raging. Julien is from Luxemburg, so instead of having to go to war he studies piano in Paris. One day his friend Jacques, also a musician and now a fighter pilot on th...
The Wedding Ring
A vet tries to create his own Garden of Eden
In Alexandria, in 1938, Darley, a young British schoolmaster and poet, makes friends through Pursewarden, the British consular officer, with Justine, the beautiful and mysterious wife of a Coptic bank...
Michael Kohlhaas - The Rebel
It's medieval times. Kohlhaas merchants with horses. When going to the local fair to sell his horses, is forced by a noble to leave him part of the merchandise as payment for traveling through his lan...
Laughter in the Dark
Swinging London in the 1960's. Deals with the affection of a middle-aged man for a very young woman, resulting in a mutually parasitic relationship.
Before Winter Comes
Comedy set in a refugee camp in occupied Austria after World War II. A shrewd multi-lingual interpreter who mediates between Russian and British military brass enters into a friendly rivalry with Brit...
Anticipation, ou l'Amour en l'an 2000
Demetrius has just arrived on Earth from another galaxy. But the girl brought to him by the commissar, Hostess 703, is not a "physical love" girl; she's a "sentimental love" one, who only knows how to...
The Oldest Profession
A collection of sketches on prostitution through the ages. 1) "The Prehistoric Era": A caveman discovers that a cavewoman is more attractive when cave paint is applied to her face. And she can earn mo...
First shown on January 13, 1967 Anna was the first colour broadcast on French television. Directed by Pierre Koralnik, Anna was une comédie musicale showcasing the talents of the ex-Mrs Jean-Luc Godar...
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Lamiel (Anna Karina) is a poor orphan girl who climbs her way to the social elite in this 19th-century costume drama. A doctor (Michel Bouquet) lives vicariously through Anna as he oversees the progre...
The Stranger is a literal (but still very cinematic) adaptation of the novel by Albert Camus. Marcello Mastrioanni stars as Meursault, a man who feels utterly isolated from everyone and everything aro...
In eighteenth-century France, a girl is forced against her will to take vows as a nun. Three mothers superior treat her in radically different ways, ranging from maternal concern, to sadistic persecut...
Made in U.S.A
Paula Nelson (Anna Karina), a female version of Humphrey Bogart's hard boiled detectives, goes to Atlantic City to meet her lover, Richard Politzer, at an unknown point in the future (maybe 1969). Onc...
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.
In WWII, Lieut. Martino and his men are assigned to lead a group of prostitutes through the mountainous ways to serve in brothels for Italian soldiers in Albania.
Pierrot le Fou
Pierrot escapes his boring society and travels from Paris to the Mediterranean Sea with Marianne, a girl chased by hit-men from Algeria. They lead an unorthodox life, always on the run.
La nouvelle vague par elle-même
Made for Cinéastes de notre temps series. In 1964, several French New Wave auteurs discuss the success and crisis of the wave. Featuring Claude Chabrol, François Truffaut, Jacques Rivette, Jean-Luc Go...
Circle of Love
In a chain reaction of romantic adventures, various people play musical beds in a remake of Max Ophul's "La Ronde."
All About Loving
Serge follows Hélène in the crowded streets of Paris and manages to seduce her. Werther takes Sophie to her dentist, Raoul, who tries to seduce her too.
Band of Outsiders
Cinephile slackers Franz and Arthur spend their days mimicking the antiheroes of Hollywood noirs and Westerns while pursuing the lovely Odile. The misfit trio upends convention at every turn, be it th...
The Lovely Month of May
Candid interviews of ordinary people on the meaning of happiness, an often amorphous and inarticulable notion that evokes more basic and fundamentally egalitarian ideals of self-betterment, prosperity...
Sweet and Sour
Gerard, a young man from a "good family" dreams of becoming an actor. To do this, he follows everywhere his sister Frédérique who is infatuated with cinéma vérité.
Le Petit Soldat
During the Algerian war for independence from France, a young Frenchman living in Geneva who belongs to a right-wing terrorist group and a young woman who belongs to a left-wing terrorist group meet a...
She'll Have to Go
When Francis and Douglas Oberon learn that their late grandmother has bequeathed the family fortune to distant cousin Toni, they immediately start plotting to get their hands on the money. They dream ...
Sheherazade is promised to a powerful Sultan as a gift in exchange for free passage to the Holy Land. When the Sultan's underling saves her from certain death, she falls madly in love with her hero.
3 Fables of Love
"Les quatre vérités" aka "The Four Truths" is a movie anthology that consists of four segments, all loosely parodying fables from the 17th-century French poet Jean de la Fontaine. The US cut usually f...
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...
Vivre Sa Vie
Twelve episodic tales in the life of a Parisian woman and her slow descent into prostitution.
Tonight or Never
Laurent is theatrical director, his girl Valerie an aspiring actress. Their relationship begins to fracture when Valerie doesn’t get the role in Laurent’s play.
A Woman Is a Woman
Longing for a baby, a stripper pursues another man in order to make her boyfriend jealous.
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 ...