French Actress Madeleine LeBeau Dies

“Casablanca” actress Madeleine LeBeau died May 1 in Estepona, Spain as a result of complications after breaking a thigh bone at the age of 92.

LeBeau was the last living cast member of the iconic film. She played Yvonne – Bogey’s “jilted mistress”.

LeBeau made her screen debut in the French film “Girls in Distress” – “Jeunes filles en détresse” – in 1939. After fleeing France just before the German occupation, LeBeau and her then husband Marcel Dalio – who also appeared in “Casablance” as the cropier – managed to escape and ended up in the United States. The couple feared for their lives when Dalio’s face appeared on a propaganda poster on how to spot a Jew – the Dalio’s were Jewish.

LeBeau returned to France at the end of World War II.

Many of her fellow cast members in “Casablanca” were refugees from the Nazi occupation. The bar scene with the battling songs and the emotions that followed during the singing of French National Anthem “La Marseillaise’ were real.

While most well known for her role in “Casablanca”; LeBeau appeared in nearly three dozen productions in the US and France including “Hold Back the Dawn”, “Gentleman Jim”, “Paris After Dark”, “Music for Millions”, “The Secret of Monte-Cristo”, “Paris Still Sings!”, “Napoleon”, “Life Together”, “81/2”, “Gunmen of Rio Grande”, and her final performance in 1969 in “Allo Police”.

She was born Marie Madeleine Berthe Lebeau on June 10, 1923 in Antony, France (near Paris).

Predeceased by her second husband Tullio Pinelli – who lived to be 100, LeBeau is survived by stepson Carlo Alberto Pinelli.

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