Robbe-Grillet dies at 85

Novelist was key New Wave figure

PARIS -- French novelist-turned-filmmaker Alain Rob-be-Grillet died Monday at the age of 85, the Gallic-language academy L'Academie Francaise reported.

One of the most influential writers of the second half of the 20th century, Robbe-Grillet is best known as the pioneer of the "new novel" genre in the 1950s, which redefined conventional ideas on literature during the period.

He also lent his writing talents to the French New Wave movement in cinema, penning the script for Alain Resnais' legendary "Last Year at Marienbad" in 1961, for which he received an Oscar nomination.

Robbe-Grillet eventually went on to direct 10 of his own features, including the Franco-Czech movies "Eden and After" and "The Man Who Lies," 1983's "The Beautiful Prisoner," 2005's "The Blue Villa" and "Gradiva" in 2006.

Robbe-Grillet penned a total of 10 novels before his death, with his first published book, "The Erasers," adapted into a 1969 feature film. The writer-director's last book, "A Sentimental Novel," was published in 2007.

Though Robbe-Grillet was elected to l'Academie Francaise, he never took his seat among the 40-member elite known as "immortals."

Robbe-Grillet is survived by his wife, novelist Catherine Robbe-Grillet.