Bernardo Bertolucci

“With the death of Parajanov, cinema lost one of its magicians. Parajanov’s fantasy will forever fascinate and bring joy to the people of the world…”

— Bernardo Bertolucci (1990)

Bernardo Bertolucci ©
Bernardo Bertolucci © M. M. Vartanov

I learned the news from the 90 year old Agnes Varda. I just saw she posted her farewell to Bernardo Bertolucci who passed away at age 77 today (November 26). I remember watching Varda’s Cleo from 5 to 7 and Bertolucci’s Last Tango in Paris in our Hollywood apartment with Papa (Mikhail Vartanov). When I met Varda five years ago in Hollywood (also in November) she signed a book that the 80 year old Luce Vigo had signed and gifted me in LA two years earlier (during the Parajanov-Vartanov Institute’s Jean Vigo retrospective). It was a book by Veronique Godard (Jean-Luc Godard‘s sister) that both Agnes Varda and Luce Vigo wrote introductions for. Two weeks later (again in Hollywood) Bertolucci signed for me the screenplays of his films Stealing Beauty (with Liv Tyler) and Last Tango in Paris (with Marlon Brando). I gifted him a copy of Papa’s film Parajanov: The Last Spring and they wheeled his chair into the car…. Farewell, Maestro.

Boy With a Movie Camera (Martiros M. Vartanov)

Parajanov-Vartanov Institute

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