I was sad to hear just now, on the 20h00 news headlines, that Bruno Cremer, who played Maigret for 14 years in the eponymous TV series, died today aged 80. For me, he was the incarnation of Maigret – tall, large, apparently ponderous but with a quick brain, and with a spark of humour that illuminated his face at unexpected moments. Many actors have played Maigret, both English and French (and no doubt other nationalities as well) but I felt that Bruno Cremer interpreted Maigret best of all.
Interviewed on TV several years ago, Bruno Cremer said that what appealed to him about the character of Maigret was his ‘passion pour ce qu’il a à faire’ (his passion for what he’s got to do).
I hope they show all the episodes in which he took part on TV very soon. There must be more than 30 of them, many based on the books, some more loosely on Simenon’s ideas, but all centred on the character of Maigret – the epitome of the 1940s-1960s Parisian policeman. Those were the days before Internet crime and international terrorism, when life somehow seemed more simple and villains more predictable.
For my post on the top 10 Maigret novels, click here.
Copyright © 2010 A writer’s lot in France, all rights reserved