This darkly handsome leading man has been as comfortable starring in Italian productions as in those of his native France. Jacques Perrin made his screen debut in 1957 in ""La Peau de l'ours" and starred on the Paris stage in "L'Annee du bac" for more than 400 performances. Perrin was seen in this play by Italian director Valerio Zurlini and won the role of the adolescent brother in love with Claudia Cardinale in "Girl With a Suitcase" (1960), which was to become the first of numerous Italian films Perrin would make. He was cited as Best Actor at the 1966 Venice Film Festival for his roles in Vittorio De Seta's "Almost a Man" and in the Spanish production "The Search." While his acting output has made him popular on the European continent, Perrin has appeared in films that have not always played in worldwide release. An exception was "Cinema Paradiso" (1989), in which he was the adult Toto, the young lad who forged a relationship with the aging projectionist. Perrin has continued to appear in films into the 90s, notably "Flight of the Innocent" (1992) and "Swallows Never Die in Jerusalem" (1994).
Perrin began a second career as a producer with Costa-Gavras' landmark political thriller "Z" (1969), the stunning film of the aftermath of a political assassination in Greece, in which he also appeared as a journalist. (Perrin had earlier appeared in the director's first film, 1965's "The Sleeping Car Murders.") Now launched on a dual career, Perrin went on to serve as one of the producers on the Oscar-winning "Black and White in Color" (1976), the story of French and German settlers of remote African posts who decide to fight World War I on their own terrain. Perrin did not usually act in the films he produced, which include "La guerre d'Algerie" (1972), "Hors la vie" (1991) and "Microcosmos" (1995).
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Film acting debut in "La peau de l'ours"
Played over 400 performances in "L'Annee du bac"
Cast in first Italian film, "Girl With a Suitcase"
First colloboration with Constantin Costa-Gavras, "The Sleeping Car Murders"
Won acclaim for two leading roles in "Almost a Man" and "The Search"
Co-produced "Z" for director Costa-Gavras
Produced Oscar-winning "Black and White in Color"
Co-starred in "Cinema Paradiso"
Produced and narrated "Les enfants de Lumiere/The Children of Lumiere"
Played the elder version of the narrator in "Le Pacte des loups/Brotherhood of the Wolf"