Paul Bonifas
Paul Bonifas was a French actor, born in Paris
Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...


In the 1920s, while working for the French customs service
Directorate-general of customs and indirect taxes
The Directorate-General of Customs and Indirect Taxes is a French law enforcement agency responsible for levying indirect taxes, preventing smuggling, surveilling borders, and investigating counterfeit money...

, Bonifas took classes in acting at the Conservatoire de Paris
Conservatoire de Paris
The Conservatoire de Paris is a college of music and dance founded in 1795, now situated in the avenue Jean Jaurès in the 19th arrondissement of Paris, France...

 in his spare time. He left with the first prize for comedy, which allowed him to join the Odéon Theatre
Odeon Theatre
The Odeon Theatre is a theatre in Bucharest, Romania, located on Calea Victoriei, and is one of the best-known performing arts venues in Bucharest. As an institution, it descends from the Teatrul Muncitoresc CFR Giuleşti, founded 1946; it moved to its current location, the Sala Majestic, in 1974...

 in 1933, then the Comédie-Française
The Comédie-Française or Théâtre-Français is one of the few state theaters in France. It is the only state theater to have its own troupe of actors. It is located in the 1st arrondissement of Paris....

 in 1938.

He made his first film appearance in 1935 in a version of Dostoyevsky's Crime and Punishment, directed by Pierre Chenal
Pierre Chenal
Pierre Chenal was a French director and screenwriter who flourished in the 1930s, and was best known for film noir thrillers such as the 1937 film L’Alibi, where he worked with Erich von Stroheim and Louis Jouvet. In 1939 he made Le Dernier Tournant, the first of many film treatments of James M...


During World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 he served as a lieutenant in the artillery, was badly wounded, and evacuated from Dunkirk with his unit. In London he joined the Free French
Free French Forces
The Free French Forces were French partisans in World War II who decided to continue fighting against the forces of the Axis powers after the surrender of France and subsequent German occupation and, in the case of Vichy France, collaboration with the Germans.-Definition:In many sources, Free...

, and worked for Radio Londres
Radio Londres
Radio Londres was a radio broadcast from 1940 to 1944 from the BBC in London to Nazi occupied France. It was entirely in French and was operated by Free French Forces who had escaped the German occupation...

broadcasting to occupied France.

In 1942 he appeared in the film The Foreman Went to France
The Foreman Went to France
The Foreman Went to France, also known as Somewhere in France, is a 1942 British World War II war film starring Clifford Evans, Tommy Trinder, Constance Cummings and Gordon Jackson...


In 1943 he formed "The Molière Players", who staged a repertoire of mainly Molière
Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, known by his stage name Molière, was a French playwright and actor who is considered to be one of the greatest masters of comedy in Western literature...

 works in London theatres, as well as in regional towns and at French army barracks.

In 1944 "The Molière Players" appeared in the short film Aventure malgache
Aventure Malgache
Aventure malgache is a short British propaganda film in French directed by Alfred Hitchcock for the British Ministry of Information. The title means Malagasy Adventure in English....

directed by Alfred Hitchcock
Alfred Hitchcock
Sir Alfred Joseph Hitchcock, KBE was a British film director and producer. He pioneered many techniques in the suspense and psychological thriller genres. After a successful career in British cinema in both silent films and early talkies, Hitchcock moved to Hollywood...

. This written by, and based on the experiences of, Jules Francois Clermont, an actor in Bonifas' troupe working under the name of Paul Clarus, who had operated an illegal radio station Madagascar Libre in Madagascar
The Republic of Madagascar is an island country located in the Indian Ocean off the southeastern coast of Africa...

 while the island was under Vichy
Vichy France
Vichy France, Vichy Regime, or Vichy Government, are common terms used to describe the government of France that collaborated with the Axis powers from July 1940 to August 1944. This government succeeded the Third Republic and preceded the Provisional Government of the French Republic...


Bonifas then appeared in a number of other British films, including Two Fathers
Two Fathers (film)
Two Fathers is a 1944 British wartime propaganda short film made by the Crown Film Unit, a division of the Ministry of Information, and directed by Anthony Asquith.-Plot:...

with Bernard Miles
Bernard Miles
Bernard James Miles, Baron Miles, CBE was an English character actor, writer and director. He opened the Mermaid Theatre in London in 1959, the first new theatre opened in the City of London since the 17th century....

, directed by Anthony Asquith
Anthony Asquith
Anthony Asquith was a leading English film director. He collaborated successfully with playwright Terence Rattigan on The Winslow Boy and The Browning Version , among other adaptations...

, and had minor roles in the musicals Heaven Is Round the Corner
Heaven Is Round the Corner
Heaven is Round the Corner is a 1944 British musical film directed by McClean Rogers with Will Fyffe, Leni Lynn, Leslie Perrins and Austin Trevor. A country girl goes to Paris to sing professionally, where she falls in love with a member of the British Embassy...

and Champagne Charlie
Champagne Charlie (film)
Champagne Charlie is a 1944 British musical film made by Ealing Studios. It is based on an 1860s play that depicted the real life rivalry between George Leybourne, who first performed the song of that name, and Alfred Vance....

, the action adventure film The Man from Morocco
The Man from Morocco
The Man from Morocco is a 1945 action adventure film directed by Mutz Greenbaum. The film was produced by Welwyn Studios in Great Britain.-Plot:...

, the comedy-drama Johnny Frenchman
Johnny Frenchman
Johnny Frenchman is a 1945 British film produced by Ealing Studios and directed by Charles Frend. The film was produced by Michael Balcon from a screenplay by T.E.B...

and the horror film Dead of Night
Dead of Night
Dead of Night is a British portmanteau horror film made by Ealing Studios, its various episodes directed by Alberto Cavalcanti, Charles Crichton, Basil Dearden and Robert Hamer. The film stars Mervyn Johns, Googie Withers and Michael Redgrave...


Bonifas returned to France in 1946 and resumed his career in theatre, specializing in comedy, but also taking dramatic roles.

His later film career included appearances in Trapeze
Trapeze (film)
Trapeze is a 1956 circus film directed by Carol Reed and starring Burt Lancaster, Tony Curtis and Gina Lollobrigida, making her debut in American films....

(1953), The Hunchback of Notre Dame
The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1956 film)
The Hunchback of Notre Dame is a 1956 French film version of Victor Hugo's novel of the same name, directed by Jean Delannoy and produced by Raymond Hakim and Robert Hakim. The film is the first version of the novel to be made in color.It stars Mexican actor Anthony Quinn as Quasimodo and Gina...

(1956), Fanny (1961), Charade (1963), Greed in the Sun
Greed in the Sun
Greed in the Sun is a 1964 French comedy film directed by Henri Verneuil. It was entered into the 1964 Cannes Film Festival.-Cast:* Jean-Paul Belmondo - Rocco* Lino Ventura - Hervé Marec dit 'Le plouc'* Reginald Kernan - John Steiner alias Peter Frocht...

(1964), The Train (1964), Is Paris Burning?
Is Paris Burning?
Is Paris Burning? is a 1966 film dealing with the 1944 liberation of Paris by rival branches of the French Resistance and the Free French Forces.-Plot:...

(1966), Triple Cross (1966), and The Return of the Tall Blond Man with One Black Shoe
The Return of the Tall Blond Man with One Black Shoe
Le Retour du Grand Blond is a film directed by Yves Robert, in 1974. It is the continuation of Le Grand Blond avec une chaussure noire .-Synopsis:...


Bonifas died on 9 November 1975 at Vernouillet, Yvelines
Vernouillet, Yvelines
Vernouillet is a commune in the Yvelines department in the Île-de-France in north-central France.-Twin towns:* Hainburg , since 1962* Alberndorf , since 1972* Trumau , since 1977* Yarm , since 1985...

, France.

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.