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René Bail

Director, Cinematographer, Actor
(b. July 13, 1931 Montreal, Quebec)

One of the most distinctive and enigmatic figures in Quebec cinema, Bail completed a handful of films and is virtually unknown to the general public, yet exerted considerable influence on other filmmakers, particularly because of his remarkable debut film Les Désoeuvrés (1959) and his absolute insistence on working independently. He earned his living in various technical jobs (post-synchronisation, projectionist, etc.) and made his films entirely from his own resources. A serious motorcycle accident in 1972 ended his activities and his scripted magnum opus, La P'tite Vie, a three-part film on motorcycles, went unproduced. He appeared as an actor in Claude Jutra's À tout prendre (1963), Gilles Carle's Le Viol d’une jeune fille douce (1968) and Denis Héroux's Valérie (1968).

Film and video work includes

La Défaite du général Pringle, 1952 (director, cinematographer)
Tan-tan-des-bois, 1952 (director, cinematographer)
Images (Jeux), 1953 (director, cinematographer)
Chantier, 1954 (director, cinematographer)
Ville Marie, 7 hrs. a.m., 1954 (director, cinematographer)
Images, 1955 (director, cinematographer)
L'Écurie, 1956 (director, cinematographer)
Mécanique, 1956 (director, cinematographer)
Printemps, 1957 (director, cinematographer)
Kronos, 1961 (cinematographer)
Moi, un jour, 1967 (actor)

By: Tom McSorley

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