Irma Vep

Irma Vep

Olivier Assayas’s live-wire international breakthrough stars a magnetic Maggie Cheung as a version of herself: a Hong Kong action-movie star who arrives in Paris to play the latex-clad lead in a remake of Louis Feuillade’s classic silent crime serial Les vampires. What she finds is a behind-the-scenes tangle of barely controlled chaos as egos clash, romantic attractions simmer, and an obsessive director (a cannily cast Jean-Pierre Léaud) drives himself to the brink to realize his vision. Blending blasts of silent cinema, martial-arts flicks, and the music of Sonic Youth and Luna into a hallucinatory swirl of postmodern cool, Assayas composes in Irma Vep a witty critique of the nineties French film industry and the perennial tension between art and commercial entertainment.

Film Info

  • France
  • 1996
  • 99 minutes
  • Black and White/Color
  • 1.66:1
  • French, English
  • Spine #1074

DIRECTOR-APPROVED SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES

  • New 2K digital restoration, approved by director Olivier Assayas, with 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New interview with Assayas
  • On the Set of “Irma Vep,” a behind-the-scenes featurette
  • Interview from 2003 with Assayas and critic Charles Tesson
  • Interview from 2003 with actors Maggie Cheung and Nathalie Richard
  • Musidora, the Tenth Muse (2013), a documentary on the actor who originated the role of Irma Vep
  • Les vampires: Hypnotic Eyes (1916), the sixth episode in Louis Feuillade’s silent-film serial
  • Cinema in the Present Tense, a June 2020 address on the state of cinema by Assayas
  • Man Yuk: A Portrait of Maggie Cheung, a 1997 short film by Assayas
  • Black-and-white rushes for the film
  • English subtitle translation and English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • PLUS: An essay by critic Aliza Ma

    New cover by Jillian Adel

Purchase Options

Coming soon, available Apr 27, 2021

Special Features

  • New 2K digital restoration, approved by director Olivier Assayas, with 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New interview with Assayas
  • On the Set of “Irma Vep,” a behind-the-scenes featurette
  • Interview from 2003 with Assayas and critic Charles Tesson
  • Interview from 2003 with actors Maggie Cheung and Nathalie Richard
  • Musidora, the Tenth Muse (2013), a documentary on the actor who originated the role of Irma Vep
  • Les vampires: Hypnotic Eyes (1916), the sixth episode in Louis Feuillade’s silent-film serial
  • Cinema in the Present Tense, a June 2020 address on the state of cinema by Assayas
  • Man Yuk: A Portrait of Maggie Cheung, a 1997 short film by Assayas
  • Black-and-white rushes for the film
  • English subtitle translation and English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • PLUS: An essay by critic Aliza Ma

    New cover by Jillian Adel
Irma Vep
Cast
Maggie Cheung
Maggie
Jean-Pierre Léaud
René Vidal
Nathalie Richard
Zoé
Bulle Ogier
Mireille
Lou Castel
José Murano
Arsinée Khanjian
American woman
Antoine Basler
Journalist
Nathalie Boutefeu
Laure
Alex Descas
Desormeaux
Dominique Faysse
Maïté
Bernard Nissile
Markus
Olivier Torrès
Ferdinand/Moreno
Credits
Written and directed by
Olivier Assayas
Executive producer
Françoise Guglielmi
Producer
Georges Benayoun
Cinematographer
Éric Gautier
Costumes
Françoise Clavel
Jessica Doyle
Production designer
François-Renaud Labarthe
Editor
Luc Barnier
Sound
Philippe Richard
Sound mixer
William Flageollet
Production manager
Sylvie Barthet
Film scratcher
Claude Duty