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            Daniel Gelin


            Gallic lead and character actor Daniel Gelin did not have an easy life but was warmly embraced as a talented star who appeared to fine advantage for such legendary directors as Max Ophüls, Louis Malle, Jean Cocteau, Alfred Hitchcock, and Claude Lelouch. He left home at age 16 to take dramatic arts classes under the guidance of Louis Jouvet. After a long apprenticeship in extra films parts beginning in 1941, he finally earned leading roles in 1949 and went on to mesmerize audiences in such films as Rendez-vous de juillet (1949), Le plaisir (1952), Napoléon (1955), The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956), Le testament d'Orphée, ou ne me demandez pas pourquoi! (1960) and many more.

            It's generally considered, however, that he squandered his talent and could have accomplished much more. His personal life was a mess. The turbulent Gelin lived a highrollercoaster life with stormy relationships that led to suicide attempts and a long battle with alcohol and drugs. One son, Pascal Gelin, died at the age of 14 months when he accidentally swallowed pills in 1957. In 1999, another son, Xavier Gélin, lost his battle with cancer. He was married three times. His daughter, actress Maria Schneider, however, was the product of his liasion with French model Christine Marie Schneider, whom he never married.