Date Of Birth:
22 February 1900
Date Of Death:
29 July 1983
Place Of Birth:
Best Known As:
The Spanish surrealist who directed 'The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie'
Spanish filmmaker Luis Buuel was a key figure in the 20th century art and intellectual movement of surrealism, and, years later, the Oscar-nominated maker of The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie and That Obscure Object of Desire. In the early 1920s, Buuel befriended painter Salvador Dali and poet Federico Garca Lorca at the University of Madrid, then spent five years in Paris learning filmmaking and horsing around with intellectuals. He and Dali made the short film Un Chien Andalou (1929) as an expression of their "surrealist" movement, eschewing norms such as narrative and logic and emphasizing the impact of the images. The film is now a classic. Buuel's next short film, L'Age d'Or (1930) was banned in 1934 for being anti-Catholic and anti-authoritarian in general, themes he worked over many times in his career. The film was not seen publicly for 45 years. Although Buuel stopped directing films for nearly 15 years, he kept his hand in producing, dubbing and other aspects, in France, in the U.S. and in Mexico. He returned to filmmaking in Mexico in the late 1940s, and achieved status as an important international filmmaker in the 1950s. At the top of his game in the 1960s and '70s, Buuel was known for his often humorous attacks on the morals and norms of society. He made The Exterminating Angel (1962) and Belle de Jour (1964, starring Catherine Deneuve), and earned Oscar nominations for the screenplays for The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (1972) and That Obscure Object of Desire (1977). He released his autobiography, My Last Sigh, in 1982 and died the next year.
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