Here is a tribute to one of France's best actors and one of the world's most beautiful men, iconic Alain Delon.
Born in 1935, Delon became one of Europe's most prominent actors and screen sex symbols in the 1960s. He achieved critical acclaim for roles in films such as Rocco and His Brothers (1960), Purple Noon (1960), L'Eclisse (1962), The Leopard (1963), and Le Samouraï (1967). Over the course of his career Delon worked with many well known directors, including Luchino Visconti, Jean-Luc Godard, Jean-Pierre Melville, Michelangelo Antonioni and Louis Malle.
His father was of French and Corsican Italian descent, and his mother was of French and German ancestry. His parents divorced early on, and Delon had a stormy childhood, being frequently expelled from school.
In 1953/1954 he served with the French Marines in Indochina. In the mid-'50s he worked at various odd jobs including waiter, salesman and porter in Les Halles market. He decided to try an acting career and in 1957 made his film debut in Yves Allégret's Quand la femme s'en mêle (1957). He declined an offer of a contract from producer David O. Selznick, and in 1960 he received international recognition for his role in Luchino Visconti's Rocco et ses frères (1960). In 1961 he appeared on the stage in "'Tis a Pity She's a Whore", directed by Visconti, in Paris.
Delon was a sensation early in his career; he came to embody the young, energetic, often morally corrupted man. With his breathtaking good looks he was also destined to play tender lovers and romantic heroes, and he was a French embodiment of the type created in America by James Dean. His first outstanding success came with the role of the parasite Tom Ripley in Rene Clement's sun-drenched thriller Plein soleil (1960). Delon presented a psychological portrait of a murderous young cynic who attempts to take on the identity of his victim. A totally different role was offered to him by Visconti in Rocco et ses frères (1960). In this film Delon plays the devoted Rocco, who accepts the greatest sacrifices to save his shiftless brother Simon.
After several other films in Italy, Delon returned to the criminal genre with Jean Gabin in Mélodie en sous-sol (1963). This work, a classic example of the genre, was distinguished not only by a soundly worked-out screenplay, but also by the careful production and the excellent performances of both Delon and Gabin. It was only in the late 1960s that the sleek and lethal Delon came to epitomize the calm, psychopathic hoodlum, staring into the camera like a cat assessing a mouse. His tough, ruthless side was first used to real effect by Jean-Pierre Melville in Le samouraï (1967). In 1970 he had a huge success in the bloodstained Borsalino (1970) playing a small-time gangster in the 1930s who, with Jean-Paul Belmondo, becomes king of the Marseilles underworld. Delon later won critical acclaim for his roles, against type, in Joseph Losey's Mr. Klein (1976) in which he played (brilliantly) the icily sinister title role.
Alain Delon never stopped playing, appearing either on the screen or on the stage, and has become France's most emblematic actor.
In 1973, he recorded with Dalida "Paroles... paroles...", a popular French-language version of the Italian song "Parole parole".
And in 1983, a song with Shirley Bassey, "Thought I'd ring you".
Enjoy Alain Delon's tantalizing, devilish beauty!
Delon sings Laetitia (theme from "Les aventuriers" - "The Last Adventure" - 1967).
Thought I'd ring you