May 22, 2022

At his funeral, the crowd mourns a “sublime actor” who left too soon

The sky is a uniform gray and the cold penetrating in this late January morning. And yet many of them gather around the Saint-Eustache church (1st arrondissement) where a blessing is organized this Thursday at 11 a.m. in honor of Gaspard Ulliel, who died at 37 in a collision with another skier. , January 19. Inside a thousand guests are expected while outside, around 200 people, according to AFP and 270 according to our own estimates, come to pay their last respects to the actor. Or just work, given the number of journalists present.

Everyone has their own commentary, sometimes fine and relevant, like that of this photographer wearing a beret when Catherine Deneuve arrived: “Oh damn, she took a lot! Suddenly, a wave of excitement runs through the crowd. “They will take out the coffin [du corbillard] announces a woman in a purple coat. A prediction which, unsurprisingly, will prove a little later.

“It’s not fair to leave so young”

Just behind the barrier, Sylviane takes care not to lose a crumb of the ceremony, even if not much happens once the coffin is in the church. “I am still in shock and I wanted to be present for Gaspard Ulliel, explains moved this resident of Plessis-Robinson (Hauts-de-Seine). It’s not fair to leave so young, I have a son the same age and for the parents it must be terrible. For her, who has seen many of his films, this “sublime actor” was “in line with Alain Delon”. So when the security service begins to distribute mass booklets, she is in the front row. It is moreover she who will provide her copy to 20 Minutes. It must be said that Sylviane is not a novice. She attended the funeral of Jean-Pierre Mocky whom she “adored” and that of Johnny Hallyday, her “favorite singer”.

The mass booklet, graciously offered by Sylviane. – G. Novello

It is because she regretted not having gone to La Madeleine to pay a last tribute to Johnny, that Sophie, retired, made the trip. “I came to make an act of presence,” she confides. And then he is the most beautiful French actor. He seemed very nice, very human. One regret: “I would have liked him to tour more, we haven’t seen him enough in the cinema. And Sophie has a theory about choosing Saint-Eustache: “it’s probably because it’s younger, trendier than La Madeleine. In fact, Gaspard Ulliel lived his childhood in the neighborhood and was baptized in Saint-Eustache, but in 20 Minutes, Sophie’s theory is validated.

Near the barriers, new distribution of mass booklets. Sylviane holds out her arms. The guy from the organization isn’t fooled: “It’s the fourth time I’ve donated here! Further on, a young man in need of attention decides to read the famous libretto aloud. CNews reporters rush in as Vincent Lindon arrives late.

We even reject the family

Julia, who works and lives in the neighborhood, wanted to mark the occasion on her way. “I was an extra on one of his films, The Princess of Montpensier, with period dress and everything else,” she says. Not in the “fana mania”, she just wants to remember a “memory of cinema”. Speaking of cinema, a man with an earring scrutinizes the scene attentively. “I am the father of actor Johan Libéreau, he explains, not a little proud. He played with Gaspard Ulliel in A people and their king. Besides, they were to meet again soon. It was very hard for him. His son being inside the church, he tried to join him but he did not have the password to cross the security check. Suddenly, a young man walks along the church to the visibly late entrance. ” Oh shit ! But he’s my son! »

Around noon, the first guests begin to leave Saint-Eustache for a final public tribute to Gaspard Ulliel. The security service intimates to the public to “let the press work”. But a young woman with a ponytail does not let herself be fooled and retorts: “We don’t have cameras but we are also here to pay tribute! The coffin makes its appearance on rue Rambuteau as respectful applause rises from the assembled crowd. Then head to the Père-Lachaise cemetery. It was sad, but it was beautiful.