Largely due to his ability to work fast and with minimal (natural) lighting, and his use of hand-held cameras, Coutard was the most popular cinematographer among New Wave directors. Though he shot 14 films with Godard over a highly experimental eight-year period, he was also known for his ability to adapt himself to numerous directorial styles. Stand-outs of his nouvelle vague period include the richly textured black-and-white of Francois Truffaut's "Jules and Jim" (1962), the bleak grays of Godard's "Alphaville" (1965), the overwrought color of Godard's "Contempt" (1963; in which he appears) and the crisp brilliance of "Pierrot le fou" (1965). Coutard won praise for his feature directing debut, "Hoa-binh" (1969), though his subsequent efforts have been less impressive.
Director (Feature Film)
Cinematography (Feature Film)
Writer (Feature Film)
Spent 11 years in Vietnam: half with the French expeditionary forces and half as a civilian still photographer for "Indochine sud-est asiatique", "Radar", "Life" and "Paris-Match"
Shot first medium-length film in Laos
First feature as co-cinematographer, "Paradiso terrestre"
Shot first Godard film, "A Bout de souffle/Breathless"
Debut as director of short, "Singal l'antilop sacree"
Feature film directorial debut, "Hoa Binh"