Leos Carax

Alex Christophe Dupont[1][2] (born 22 November 1960), best known as Leos Carax (French: [leɔs kaʁaks]), is a French film director, critic, and writer. Carax is noted for his poetic style and his tortured depictions of love. His first major work was Boy Meets Girl (1984), and his notable works include Les Amants du Pont-Neuf (1991) and Holy Motors (2012). His professional name is an anagram of his real name, 'Alex', and 'Oscar'.

Leos Carax
Leos Carax Cannes 2012.jpg
Alex Christophe Dupont

(1960-11-22) 22 November 1960 (age 60)
Suresnes, France
  • Film director
  • critic
  • actor
  • screenwriter
Years active1984–present

Early lifeEdit

Leos Carax was born Alex Christophe Dupont in Suresnes, Hauts-de-Seine, a commune in the suburbs of Paris, France.[1] His mother is American and his father is French.


He began his film career with a series of short films, and as a film critic, before he released Boy Meets Girl (1984). The piece established Carax's reputation for a mature visual style. It also saw the first grouping of Carax with Denis Lavant and cinematographer Jean-Yves Escoffier. He followed the piece with Mauvais Sang (literally Bad Blood but mostly known as The Night is Young) in 1986, which alienated some of his audience, but the work continued to explore the complexities of love in the modern world, this time through a darker, more criminal viewpoint. The work was clearly an homage to French New Wave cinema, and his use of such actresses as Juliette Binoche proved a touching tribute to his influences, especially Jean-Luc Godard. The film was entered into the 37th Berlin International Film Festival.[3]

Five years later, Carax returned to directing with Les Amants du Pont-Neuf, which proved to be an expensive undertaking as Parisian authorities granted him only 10 days in which he could film on Pont Neuf. His initial reaction to the problems of filming on a public bridge had been to construct a model of the bridge in the community of Lansargues, in Southern France. However, on the first day of filming Denis Lavant injured his thumb severely, which pushed the movie back by a month. Subsequent financial difficulties further pushed filming over a much longer period than intended. The movie was released to critical acclaim and opened the door for Carax to enter more experimental waters with his fourth feature, Pola X. That film, released in 1999, was an adaptation of Herman Melville's tale of incest, Pierre: or, The Ambiguities.

Carax's 2012 film Holy Motors stars his regular collaborator, Denis Lavant.[4] The film competed for the Palme d'Or at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival.[5][6]

Upcoming projectsEdit

Carax is set to direct Annette, a music-filled drama feature film written by Sparks and starring Adam Driver and Marion Cotillard. In 2017 he also guested vocals on the Sparks track "When You're a French Director" from their album Hippopotamus.


Year Original title Type
1980 Strangulation Blues Short
1984 Boy Meets Girl Feature
1986 Mauvais Sang Feature
1991 Les Amants du Pont-Neuf Feature
1997 Sans Titre Short
1999 Pola X Feature
2002 Carla Bruni: Quelqu'un m'a dit Video short
2003 Carla Bruni: Tout le monde Video short
2005 New Order: Crystal (Alternative Version) Video short
2006 My Last Minute Short
2008 Tokyo! - Segment "Merde" Short
2010 42 One Dream Rush Short
2012 Holy Motors Feature
2014 Gradiva Short
2021 Annette Feature
Actor (selected)
Year Title
1987 King Lear
1997 The House
2004 Process
2006 977
2007 Mister Lonely
2012 Holy Motors


  1. ^ a b Philippe Rège. (2010). Encyclopedia of French film directors. Volume I. A–M. Lanham: Scarecrow Press. pp. 175–176. ISBN 978-0-8108-6137-4. |volume= has extra text (help)
  2. ^ Manohla Dargis. (16 October 2012). "It's Not About the Destination, but About the Dizzying Ride". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 July 2013.
  3. ^ "Berlinale: 1987 Programme". berlinale.de. Retrieved 27 February 2011.
  4. ^ ""Holly motors", le retour de Léos Carax, avec Denis Lavant - News films Tournages - AlloCiné". Allocine.fr. Retrieved 11 February 2013.
  5. ^ "2012 Official Selection". Cannes. Retrieved 19 April 2012.
  6. ^ "Cannes Film Festival 2012 line-up announced". timeout. Retrieved 19 April 2012.

Further readingEdit

External linksEdit