Pierre Richard

Pierre Richard

Pierre Richard at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival
Born Pierre-Richard Maurice Charles Léopold Defays
(1934-08-16) 16 August 1934
Valenciennes, Nord, France
Occupation Actor, director, screewriter
Years active 1967–present
Website pierre-richard.fr

Pierre Richard (born Pierre-Richard Maurice Charles Léopold Defays;[1] 16 August 1934) is a French actor, film director and screenwriter, best known for the roles of a clumsy daydreamer in comedy films. Richard is considered by many, such as Louis de Funès and Gérard Depardieu, to be one of the greatest and most talented French comedians in the last 50 years. He is also a film director and occasional singer.

Early life

Pierre Richard was born in a Bourgeois family from Valenciennes. He is the grandson of Léopold Defays who was the director of the company Escaut-et-Meuse. His name comes from the stage name of Pierre Richard-Willm who was his mother's favorite actor.[2] Pierre Richard spent his childhood and a part of his teenage years in his native city where he was a student at the Henri-Wallon high school.

Skipping regularly the classes to go to the cinema, it is Danny Kaye in Up in Arms that revealed his vocation.[3] This being received with a moderate enthousiasm by his family, he had to learn a real profession. He then studied kinesiotherapy without renouncing at the spectacle field.

Acting career

Pierre Richard at the 31e cérémonie des César in 2006

Pierre Richard started his career at the theater with Antoine Bourseiller and producing himself in famous cabarets from Paris, where he played his first sketches written with Victor Lanoux. He then began his film career in 1968 in the film Very Happy Alexander directed by Yves Robert. In 1970, he directed his first film Le Distrait, followed by Les Malheurs d'Alfred (1972) and I Don't Know Much, But I'll Say Everything (1973). He worked again with Yves Robert for the film The Tall Blond Man with One Black Shoe (1973) and its sequel The Return of the Tall Blond Man with One Black Shoe (1974), both written by Francis Veber, who then casted him as the main role in The Toy (1976), his first film as a director. Francis Veber and Pierre Richard began a successful partnership in the early 1980s, highlighted by the three successful comedies La Chèvre (1981), Les Compères (1983) and Les Fugitifs (1986), which paired Richard with Gérard Depardieu. Richard moved again behind the camera to direct On peut toujours rêver (1991) and Droit dans le mur (1997).

Recurring names

Among his most famous film roles, it happened to Pierre Richard to play different characters with the same name but without any link between them. He is named :

Other activities

Since 1986, Pierre Richard is also a businessman and winemaker. He owns the restaurant Au pied de chameau in Paris and a 50-hectare vineyard which produces some 80,000 bottles a year (red and rosé) labelled as Château Bel Évêque in Gruissan in the department of Aude.[4]

Personal life

Married and divorced three times, he has two sons who are both actors are musicians, Olivier is a group member of "Blues trottoir" and plays the saxophone whereas Christophe plays the double bass. His grandson, Arthur Defays, is a model and actor.


Note : Pierre Richard has played in all the films he has directed.

Year Title Role Director
1958 Les Amants de Montparnasse uncredited Jacques Becker
1967 Alexandre le bienheureux Colibert Yves Robert
Un idiot à Paris a policeman Serge Korber
1968 La Prisonnière uncredited Henri-Georges Clouzot
1970 Le Distrait (Absent-minded aka. The Daydreamer) Pierre Malaquet Pierre Richard
Trois hommes sur un cheval the painter Marcel Moussy
1971 La Coqueluche Pierre Christian-Paul Arrighi
1972 Les malheurs d'Alfred Alfred Dhumonttyé Pierre Richard
Le grand blond avec une chaussure noire François Perrin Yves Robert
1973 La raison du plus fou the learner Raymond Devos and François Reichenbach
Je sais rien, mais je dirai tout Pierre Gastié-Leroy Pierre Richard
1974 Juliette et Juliette Bob Rozenec Remo Forlani
Un nuage entre les dents Prévot Marco Pico
La moutarde me monte au nez (Lucky Pierre) Pierre Durois Claude Zidi
Le retour du grand blond François Perrin Yves Robert
1975 Trop c'est trop cameo appearance Didier Kaminka
La Course à l'échalote Pierre Vidal Claude Zidi
1976 On aura tout vu ! François Perrin Georges Lautner
Les Naufragés de l'île de la Tortue Jean-Arthur Bonaventure Jacques Rozier
Le Jouet (The Toy) François Perrin Francis Veber
1978 Je suis timide... mais je me soigne Pierre Renaud Pierre Richard
La Carapate Jean-Philippe Duroc Gérard Oury
1980 C'est pas moi, c'est lui Pierre Renaud Pierre Richard
Le Coup du parapluie (The Umbrella Coup) Grégoire Lecomte Gérard Oury
1981 La Chèvre (Knock on Wood) François Perrin Francis Veber
1983 Un chien dans un jeu de quilles Pierre Cohen Bernard Guillou
Les Compères (ComDads) François Pignon Francis Veber
1984 Le Jumeau (The Twin) Matthias et Mathieu Duval Yves Robert
1985 Tranches de vie Dubois François Leterrier
1986 Les Fugitifs François Pignon Francis Veber
1988 Mangeclous Mangeclous Moshé Mizrahi
À gauche en sortant de l'ascenseur (Door on the Left as You Leave the Elevator) Yann Ducoudray Édouard Molinaro
1990 Promotion canapé cameo appearance Didier Kaminka
Bienvenue à bord ! the hitchhiker Jean-Louis Leconte
1991 On peut toujours rêver Charles de Boisleve Pierre Richard
1992 Vieille canaille Charlie Gérard Jourd'hui
1993 La Cavale des fous Bertrand Daumale Marco Pico
1994 La Partie d'échecs Ambroise Yves Hanchar
1995 L'Amour conjugal Squirrat Benoît Barbier
1997 A Chef in Love (Shekvarebuli kulinaris ataserti retsepti) Pascal Ichak Nana Dzhordzhadze
Droit dans le mur Romain Pierre Richard
2000 27 Missing Kisses Captain Nana Dzhordzhadze
2003 Mariées mais pas trop Maurice Donnay Catherine Corsini
Les Clefs de bagnole (The Car Keys) as himself Laurent Baffie
2004 En attendant le déluge Jean-René Damien Odoul
2005 Le Cactus Christian Gérard Bitton and Michel Munz
2006 Essaye-moi Yves-Marie's father Pierre-François Martin-Laval
Le Serpent (The Serpent) Cendras Eric Barbier
2008 Faubourg 36 Max Christophe Barratier
King Guillaume William-Fernand Pierre-François Martin-Laval
2009 Victor Victor Thomas Gilou
Cinéman cameo appearance Yann Moix
Le Bonheur de Pierre Pierre Martin Robert Menard
2011 All Together Albert Stéphane Robelin
2012 Mes héros Jean Éric Besnard





  1. "Pierre Richard : tendre inadapté". Les Échos (in French). 7 May 2015.
  2. 1 2 "Pierre Richard, l'incompris" (in French). France 2. Retrieved 6 September 2015.
  3. "L'école buissonnière a réussi à Pierre Richard". La Voix du Nord (in French). 25 April 2010.
  4. "Château Bel Évêque" (in French). Gault Millau. Retrieved 5 August 2016.

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