What is the untamed Angelika doing today? Eighty-four-year-old Michèle Mercier, her most famous role did not bring happiness

Angelica. With this name, people all over the world remember the face of the charming French actress Michèle Mercier. However, the life of the representative of the untamed Angelica was not a walk in the park. According to her, she was unlucky in every way.

Michèle Mercier, real name Jocelyne Yvonne Renée Mercier, was born on January 1, 1939 in the southern French city of Nice. In childhood, she loved ballet, which she also studied for a long time. She wanted to continue dancing in the future, but a small film role came her way, which made her reconsider her plans and wanted to work as an actress. The beginnings of her career date back to 1957, when she traveled to England as part of an internship while studying ballet. Her path was crossed that year by director Denys de La Patellière, who cast her in his film Revenge from the Grave. The French director liked the young Mercier very much, and in the same year she scored the role of Nicole Noblet in his successful drama Give Me My Chance.

At the end of the fifties, the young French woman’s career began to take off promisingly. In 1959, she starred in the German-French romantic comedy Angel on Earth. The early sixties were very successful for the young actress. She shone in the crime film Shoot the Pianist (1960), then also in the romantic drama Do you like Brahams? (1961). In addition to Germany and France, she also worked in Italy. She appeared in the film Furious Years (1962), then in the drama Thursday (1963) and also got a role in the comedy Puppet. She returned to the clutches of French directors with the film Nejstarší Fercheaux (1963).

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A year later, a turning point occurred, which affected not only her career, but to a large extent her private life as well. It was the role of the untamed Angelica, which she became famous for. The five-part romantic-adventure series was gradually filmed between 1964 and 1968. During these years, the French actress had no shortage of work. Mostly French, German or Italian directors cast her in their films. For example, she starred in the comedy drama Hrom do too! (1965), Casanova ´70 (1965), Lady Hamiltonová (1968) or Provaz a colt (1969), which is broadcast by ČT2 on Sunday evenings. After finishing the successful five-part series, the young Mercier could not get rid of the “sticker” of Angelika. Viewers constantly associated her with her most famous role. Her most recent acting work is Celles qui aimaient Richard Wagner, a biographical drama directed by Jean-Louis Guillermouse (2011).

The personal life of the famous French actress was not the most rosy. In 1961, she first married assistant director André Smagghe, who later became an alcoholic. The marriage ended in divorce after four years. Even with the second relationship, everything was not without mistakes. In 1970, she married racing driver Claude Bourillot, who disappeared one day with all her jewelry and money. The couple divorced in 1976. Michèle Mercier didn’t have a happy ending. The relationship with the Italian actor and director Vittorio Gassman ended with an attempted rape. She also became a “princess” for a few years, in the arms of her last partner, the Italian prince Nicola Bocompagni-Ludovisi, who, however, was more in love with Angelica than with Mercier herself.

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“After the huge success of the film Angelika, the Marquise of Angels, it was all over, I didn’t get a single decent film offer. I should have died young, I’m bored and I’m watching the time go by in horror.” the actress said ironically in an interview with Amo Mama magazine. A few years ago, a serious illness entered her life. “I have cancer. It always seems unthinkable until it happens. There are some who cry when they find out, I remained calm as I always am. From that moment on, I thought to myself: I only do what I want,” Michèle Mercier revealed.

Eighty-four-year-old Mercier currently still lives in France, and is attended to daily by a caregiver. Some fans, even considering her age, do not forgive their comments on her appearance, which is very different from the youthful Angelica.

Sources: csfd, Amo Mama, ŽivotvČesku.cz, Vogue


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