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French film star Annie Girardot, 79, one of Europe’s most prolific actresses with over 100 movies to her credit, died Monday after a long battle with Alzheimer’s, reports Reuters.
Girardot was known for playing the roles of strong-willed women, which earned her a large female fan base as well as a Cesar Award — France’s equivalent of an Oscar — for best actress for the 1976 film Docteur Francoise Gailland.
She won another Cesar, for best supporting actress, in 1990 for Les Miserables, which marked her return to the big screen following a long break from the film industry. She nabbed another best supporting actress Cesar approximately a decade later for 2001’s The Piano Teacher.
“Today French cinema is mourning one of its most likeable, most distinguished and most remarkable people,” Culture Minister Frederic Mitterrand said in a press statement.
Girardot is survived by her husband, actor Renato Salvatori, who she co-starred with in the 1960s classic Rocco and His Brothers, and a daughter.
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