Roger Vadim

Roger Vadim

Vadim in 1971
Born Roger Vadim Plemiannikov
(1928-01-26)26 January 1928
Paris, France
Died 11 February 2000(2000-02-11) (aged 72)
Paris, France
Cause of death Cancer
Occupation Film director, screenwriter, producer, artist
Years active 1950–1997
Spouse(s) Brigitte Bardot (1952–57)
Annette Stroyberg (1958–61)
Jane Fonda (1965–73)
Catherine Schneider (1975–77)
Marie-Christine Barrault (1990–2000)
Partner(s) Catherine Deneuve (1961–64)
Ann Biderman (1980–87)
Children 4

Roger Vadim (French: [ʁɔ.ʒe va.dim]; 26 January 1928 – 11 February 2000) was a French screenwriter, film director and producer, as well as an author, artist and occasional actor.[1] His best-known works are visually lavish films with erotic qualities, such as And God Created Woman, Barbarella, and Pretty Maids All in a Row.

Early life

Vadim was born as Roger Vadim Plemiannikov[2] in Paris. His father, Igor Nikolaevich Plemiannikov (И́горь Никола́евич Племя́нников), a White Russian military officer and pianist, had emigrated from Ukraine and became a naturalized French citizen, and was a vice consul of France to Egypt, stationed in Alexandria. His mother, Marie-Antoinette (née Ardilouze), was a French writer, and essayist.[3][4] Although Vadim lived as a diplomat's child in Northern Africa and the Middle East in his early youth, the death of his father, when Vadim was nine years old, caused the family to return to France, where his mother found work running a hostel in the French Alps, which was functioning as a way-station for Jews and other fugitives fleeing Nazism.[4]

Vadim studied journalism and writing at the University of Paris, without graduating.[4] At age 19, he became assistant to film director Marc Allégret, whom he met while working at the Theatre Sarah Bernhardt, and for whom he worked on several screenplays.


Vadim was celebrated for his romances/marriages to beautiful actresses.[5] In his mid-30s, he lived with the teenaged Catherine Deneuve, by whom he had a child, Christian Vadim, prior to his marriage to Fonda.[6] He was also involved with actress Cindy Pickett.[7] Later, he cohabited with screenwriter Ann Biderman for several years, announcing their engagement in 1984,[8] but the couple never wed.[6]

He told a story about how he lost his virginity. When he was 16, he spent the summer in Normandy, where an older girl took a fancy to him. Out of doors that night, she introduced him to the art of love and what amazed him most was that what Hemingway had written came true--"the earth moved under him". Not until somewhat later did he realize that Allied ships were bombarding the coast in preparation for the D-day invasion.


He also had two stepsons from his marriage to Schneider (heiress to the Schneider-Creusot steel and armaments firm) as well as adult stepchildren from Barrault's first marriage to Daniel Toscan du Plantier, also a friend of Vadim's, who called him "a happy man. He was someone in whom there was so much satisfaction to the end of his life. The films merely reflected his happiness."[6] Nathalie, his eldest child, told Fonda biographer Patricia Bosworth: "Jane was the love of my father's life."[9]


In addition to Vadim's theatre and film work, he also wrote several books, including the memoirs "Memoires du Diable," "Le Gout du Bonheur: Souvenirs 1940-1958" and an autobiography, D'une étoile à l'autre (From One Star to the Next) as well as a tell-all about his most famous exes, Bardot, Deneuve & Fonda: My Life with the Three Most Beautiful Women in the World, published in 1986.[10] "My attitude is that if this book makes me a little money it will be a tiny compensation for all the money I helped those actresses make," Vadim explained.[11] He also wrote several plays and books of fiction, including "L'Ange Affame".


Vadim died of cancer at age 72 on 11 February 2000. He was survived by his widow, Marie-Christine Barrault, and his four children (Nathalie, Vanessa, Christian and Vania). Ex-wives Bardot, Fonda, Schneider and Stroyberg were all in attendance at his funeral.[12] He is interred at St. Tropez Cemetery.





  1. "ROGER VADIM writes his "Memoirs of the Devil".". The Australian Women's Weekly. National Library of Australia. 12 January 1977. p. 26. Retrieved 3 January 2015.
  2. .
  3. "Roger Vadim profile at". Retrieved 18 December 2012.
  4. 1 2 3 "Biography for Roger Vadim". TCM. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
  5. "Roger Vadim is no braggart about his love life". Beaver County Times. 11 July 1975. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
  6. 1 2 3 Smith, Kyle (28 February 2000). "Sweet Svengali". People. Retrieved 30 July 2015.
  7. (24 March 1981). Cindy Has Her Own Guy Now. The Milwaukee Sentinel.
  8. Tipoff. Star-News. January 15, 1984.
  9. Bosworth, Patricia (2011). Jane Fonda: The Private Life of a Public Woman. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. p. 237. ISBN 0-547-50447-0.
  10. Pulleine, Tim (11 February 2000). Film director with a lifelong penchant for beautiful blondes and glossy, erotic movies. The Guardian.
  11. Vadim candid about reasoning behind book. Daily News. March 30, 1986.
  12. Fonda, Jane (2005). My Life So Far. New York: Random House.
  13. "Sait-on jamais... (1957) – Full cast and crew". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 15 March 2009.

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