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French film director Agnes Varda dies age 90

March 29, 2019

The family of French film director Agnes Varda has said that the New Wave icon has passed away following a struggle with cancer. Her career spanned more than 60 years.

Agnès Varda
Image: Getty Images/T. Niedermueller

French film director Agnes Varda has died at the age of 90, her family said on Friday.

"The director and artist Agnes Varda died at her home on the night of Thursday, March 29, of complications from cancer. She was surrounded by her family and friends," the family said in a statement.

Varda recently presented a new film at the Berlin International Film Festival, an event with which she was long connected. She admitted there that she was feeling old, saying: "I have to prepare to say goodbye."

One of France's most-celebrated filmmakers

Agnes Varda was born on May 30, 1928 in Brussels, Belgium, to a Greek father and a French mother, and grew up in France. She went on to become one of the most significant filmmakers of France's New Wave movement, which included such names as Jean-Luc Godard, Eric Rohmer, Francois Truffaut, Claude Chabrol and Alain Resnais.

She won the Golden Lion award of Venice in 1985 for her film "Vagabond" ("Sans toit ni loi") as the first female filmmaker to win the prize. She was also given an honorary Palme d'Or, or Golden Palm, by the Cannes Film Festival in 2015 for her life's work — also as the first woman to win the award.

Varda also worked as a visual artist.

Among her best-known feature films are "The Young Girls turn 25" ("Les demoiselles ont eu 25 ans"), "The Gleaners and I" ("Les Glaneurs et la glaneuse" and "Cleo from 5 to 7" ("Cleo de 5 a 7").

tj/rt (AFP, dpa)

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