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Nicole Stéphane (born Baroness Nicole de Rothschild, 27 May 1923 – 13 March 2007) was a French actress, producer and director.

Nicole Stéphane
Nicole de Rothschild

(1923-05-27)27 May 1923
Died13 March 2007(2007-03-13) (aged 83)
OccupationActress, Producer, Film director


The elder of the two daughters of Baron James-Henri de Rothschild and his first wife, Claude Dupont, Nicole Stéphane was a member of the Rothschild banking family of France. Her immediate family, however, also was deeply immersed in the arts. Her paternal grandfather, Baron Henri de Rothschild, was a playwright and theatrical producer who wrote under the names Charles des Fontaines and André Pascal and owned Théâtre Antoine and Théâtre Pigalle. Her first cousin Philippine de Rothschild was an actress with the Comédie-Française, using the name Philippine Pascal. And her father's brother, the vintner Philippe de Rothschild, wrote plays, owned theatres and produced films.[1]

Stéphane joined the army during the Second World War, and was briefly imprisoned in Spain in 1942 after crossing the Pyrenées while she was trying to join the Free French. She was also a liaison agent in Germany. As an actress, she is best known for her role in two films by Jean-Pierre Melville, Le Silence de la mer (1949) and Les Enfants terribles (1950).

Her final film as an actress was the film Carve Her Name with Pride (1958). Her acting career was cut short by a car accident. She reoriented herself towards production, helping in particular Georges Franju and Jean-Pierre Melville. Among her production credits was Swann in Love (1984), an adaptation of the first novel in Marcel Proust's cycle Remembrance of Things Past that starred Jeremy Irons and Ornella Muti. She was also honoured as a member of Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the government of France.[2]

In the early 1970s, Stéphane was the lover of the American writer and critic Susan Sontag.[3]

Selected filmographyEdit



  • 1953 – Nominated BAFTA Film Award for Best Foreign Actress — Les Enfants terribles (1950)


  1. ^ "Stephane, Nicole". Les Gens du Cinema (in French). Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  2. ^ Bergan, Ronald (23 March 2007). "Nicole Stéphane". The Guardian. Retrieved 31 August 2018.
  3. ^ Lerman, Leo (2007). The Grand Surprise: The Journals of Leo Lerman. New York City: Knopf. p. 413. ISBN 978-1-4000-4439-9.

External linksEdit