I've only just now stumbled across the news that the "cinéaste provocateur," as Libération calls him, "friend of Genet, husband of Anouk Aimée, companion to Nico, cabaret owner and Cassavetes producer" Nikos Papatakis died on December 17 at the age of 92. Born in in Addis Ababa to a Greek father and an Abyssinian mother, he "was a soldier in Ethiopia before being forced into exile for having sided with the Emperor Haile Selassie. He fled first to Lebanon and Greece. In 1939, he moved to Paris," where he studied acting and circulated among the likes of Jean-Paul Sartre, André Breton, Jacques Prévert, Robert Desnos and Jean Vilar.
From the Thessaloniki International Film Festival in 2005: "Between 1948 and 1955 he managed the literary café 'The Red Rose' the hangout of famous existentialists where artists like Juliette Gréco and Boris Vian debuted. In 1950 he produced his close friend Jean Genet's only movie, Un Chant d'Amour (A Love Song). In 1959, he became the co-producer of John Cassavetes's first movie, Shadows. Occasionally he directed for the theater and he recently published his autobiographical novel Tous les désespoirs sont permis."
Wikipedia: "In 1963, his first film, Les Abysses, enjoyed a 'Succès de scandale' and was entered into the 1963 Cannes Film Festival which refused to show it. It was based on Jean Genet's The Slaves. In 1967, he directed another daring film, Oi Voskoi (The Shepherds). During the Algerian War he was active in the Front de Liberation National. He returned to film in 1987 with a film in Greek, I Photografia (The Photograph). His last film was Walking on a Tightrope (1992)."
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