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Bafta-winning Amour star Emmanuelle Riva dies aged 89

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Bafta-winning Amour star Emmanuelle Riva dies aged 89

Adieu, Emmanuelle. Adieu. Emmanuelle Riva, the iconic French actress best known for her starring roles in 2012's Amour and 1959's Hiroshima Mon Amour, died in Paris on Friday, January 27.

Riva died in Paris "after a long illness", her agent, Anne Alvares Correa, told AFP. Riva is most well-known for her performance in the critically-acclaimed 2012 French film Amour, for which she was nominated for an Academy Award, and won a BAFTA and C├ęsar Award.

Riva never married and had no children.

Her nod for an Academy Award aged 85 meant she became the oldest ever Best Actress Oscar nominee. She was happy with the news of her Oscar nomination.

"I was ripe", she told the LA Times in 2013. "I was living my life by the moment". Her devastatingly persuasive performance as an octogenarian stroke victim was the acting achievement of the year, bar none: hot-to-trot Jennifer Lawrence was lucky to beat her for Silver Linings Playbook. Throughout seven decades she worked with such major filmmakers as Jean-Pierre Melville (Leon Morin, Priest), George Franju (Therese Desqueyroux), Marco Bellocchio (The Eyes, The Mouth), Philippe Garrel (Liberte, la nuit) and Krzysztof Kieslowski, in whose Three Colors: Blue she gave a memorable supporting turn as the mother of the widowed and grieving Juliette Binoche character. And even despite her cancer, Riva still performed at the Villa Medici in Rome last autumn and completed filming on two films, one due out this March and another yet to be released.

Riva was born on February 24, 1927 in rural France and made her way to Paris at 19 to the dismay of her working-class family.

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