French film star dead at just 37

French film star dead at just 37

Perhaps best known to English-speaking audiences for playing Hannibal Lecter in Hannibal Rising, Ulliel was set to star as Midnight Man in Marvel’s upcoming Moon Knight series alongside Oscar Isaac and Ethan Hawke.

At home in France, he starred in numerous highly-acclaimed films, including Saint Laurent as Yves Saint Laurent, It’s Only The End of The World, for which he won a César for Best Actor, and A Very Long Engagement. French Prime Minister Jean Castex tweeted on Wednesday, "Gaspard Ulliel grew up with cinema and cinema grew up with him. They loved each other madly. It's with a heavy heart that we will rewatch his most beautiful performances and catch his unique gaze. We have lost a French actor."

Ulliel died on Wednesday in a hospital in Grenoble, a city in southeastern France, following a skiing accident on Tuesday. He was skiing in the Savoie region when he collided with another skier and suffered serious brain trauma. Local authorities have opened an investigation into the accident.

Hannibal Rising director Peter Webber tweeted about Ulliel, writing, “Shocked and saddened to hear about the death of Gaspard Ulliel at such a young age in a skiing accident. I have such fond memories of working with him all those years ago on Hannibal Rising. Rest in peace, dear friend.” It’s Only The End of The World director Xavier Dolan also posted about the actor, writing on Instagram, “It’s unbelievable, absurd, and so painful to even think of writing these words. Your discreet laugher, your caring gaze. Your scar. Your talent. Your listening skill. Your whispers, your kindness. All these personality traits that emanated from a shining softness. Your whole being transformed my life, a being that loved deeply and that I will always love. I can’t say anything more. I feel drained, shaken by your (death).”

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Xavier Dolan (@xavierdolan)

French Culture Minister Rosalyne Bachelot described Ulliel as “an exceptional actor” in a tweet, adding, "Today the world of cinema lost a huge talent. send my condolences to his family and my loving thoughts to all those who grieve for him today."

Thierry Fremaux, director of the Cannes Film Festival, said of Ulliel, "Gaspard belonged to this new generation of actors who were making tomorrow's French cinema. He knew how to select his roles and shaped his career which filled every promise.

"Each appearance on the red carpet, from La Princesse de Montpensier to It's Only The End of the World illustrated his presence, both discreet and full of kindness. He was equally brilliant and talented. He gave a lot and we'll always remember him."

Ulliel is survived by his 6-year-old son Orso and girlfriend Gaelle Petri.

Image: Foc Kan/FilmMagic