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Elizabeth Taylor and her Lovers The Unbridled Life of Ava Gardner
Brigitte Bardot and her Lovers - Stories Behind The Screen
1497    Dibyendu Banerjee    04/07/2023

Born on 28 September 1934, Brigitte Bardot, known as the sex bomb of the fifties and sixties, had a life as epic as her fame and the drama of her films. Throughout her career, she was the fantasy of men and the idol of young girls. She always looked for passion and when the fire of passion was about to be extinguished, she often became unfaithful and packed her suitcase.

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She flirted, loved and cheated, had numerous relationships with men and women, married four times and left for another relationship when the present was getting lukewarm. Although she had a childhood filled with comfort and opportunities, she had to follow specific etiquette, was expected to behave like a little poppet and was not even allowed to choose her friends, as she belonged to a conservative, Catholic family. Those rigid restrictions imposed on her made her resentful of her parents and she longed to defy them, which sparked her rebellious nature.

brigitte bardot

In 1949, while Brigitte was busy studying ballet at the prestigious Conservatoire de Paris, she also had her first modelling job when a couple of French magazines hired her as a junior fashion model. Soon, her striking figure caught the eye of the director of Elle magazine, Hélène Gordon-Lazareff, who made her an offer that changed her life forever. In the beginning, he made Bardot a junior model, but by the next year, when she was just 15, Brigitte graced the cover of Elle on 8 March 1950.

brigitte bardot
With Roger Vadim

Before long, the movie world also became interested in her and she was offered an audition for the film Les Lauriers sont coupés, by Marc Allegre. Although the film never went into production, Bardot met Roger Vadim, assistant to filmmaker Marc Allégret at the audition and they instantly fell in love, despite a six-year age gap.

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Bardot was intoxicated by the charismatic Frenchman and later described Roger as the bohemian type, the very antithesis of her father, without any morality and confessed that he made her the impression of a wild wolf. While they became lovers, meeting secretly and then openly against the wishes of her parents, Vadim introduced her to his friends in the media, to books like The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir and began to teach her the secrets of the bedroom, passion, seduction and romance. Behind the closed doors, they began to be engaged in a wildly passionate love affair, which ruffled her father’s feathers beyond belief. Aghast by her desperate behaviour, her parents decided to send her to England to complete her schooling, far away from Roger. But in retaliation, Bardot turned on the oven and stuck her head into it, only to be discovered by her parents just in time. Backed into a corner, her parents had no other way but to accept the relationship, on condition that she marries Vadim at the age of 18. On 20 December 1952, aged 18, Bardot married director Roger Vadim, but the union would prove to be short-lived and child-free. Four years after their illustrious wedding at Paris’ Notre Dame Cathedral on 20 December 1952, Vadim and Bardot were divorced on 6th December 1957, following her affair with Jean-Louis Trintignant, her co-star in And God Created Woman, the first movie that Roger directed.

brigitte bardot
With Jean-Louis Trintignant

Brigitte had been always thirsty for new experiences and she never thought twice about shamelessly betraying her husband. But it is believed by many that Vadim was the man who urged Brigitte and Trintignant to make the intimate love scenes as realistic as possible, which possibly fanned the embers of their inevitable affair. Later Brigitte also stated that Roger taught her how to become freer in intimate scenes, which ignited the spark in her and she left him for another man, while Roger paid his price.

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Trintignant got a divorce from his wife and lived with Bardot for two years, spanning the period before and after Bardot's divorce from Vadim, but they never married. Their relationship was strained by Trintignant's frequent absence due to his commitment to the military service, along with the continuous urge of the fickle sex goddess to pursue another man, which eventually ended when Brigitte fell into the arms of musician Gilbert Bécaud, who was also married.

brigitte bardot
With Gilbert Bécaud

The mad and brief love affair between Brigitte Bardot and Gilbert Bécaud began on a TV set at the end of the 1950s, when to illustrate his song, the production offered Gibert Bécaud an unknown extra, Brigitte Bardot, who would soon become a sex symbol of the film world and a famous charming singer. During the filming of the sequence, the singer flares up for the beautiful actress and finally, the young woman would participate in several sequences of the festive program. That evening, without knowing it, viewers witnessed the beginning of a real romance. They were a couple of the year, but it did not last long, as Gilbert had based his brand image on his family life and he took a very dim view of the flashy publicity surrounding his romance with Bardot.

brigitte bardot
With Sacha Distel

In the summer of 1958, she fell in love with the young singer and crooner Sacha Distel and their short involvement gave birth to a song, Sidonie, interpreted by Bardot. They had an eight-month affair, which ended when the crooner discovered that she was also having a liaison with another man, but stated that he could not have spent his life with the actress, who did not want children.

brigitte bardot
With Jacques Charrier

But the three failed relationships in quick succession on top of her controversial superstardom worked together to have a profound adverse effect on her and she suffered a nervous breakdown. It was also rumoured that she even tried to take her own life by overdosing on sleeping pills, which was denied by her public relations manager. However, she recovered within weeks and began a relationship with her dashing co-star, Jacques Charrier, whom she met on the set of Babette Goes to War and became pregnant before they were married on 18 June 1959. Although she had absolutely no desire to become a mother, she agreed to keep the baby only at the insistence of Charrier. Their only child, their son Nicolas-Jacques Charrier, was born on 11 January 1960, but their marital relationship turned sour, as she had an affair with the Canadian-American actor Glen Ford in the early 1960s. Bardot and Charrier divorced on 20 November 1962, when Charrier took the custody of their son, who had little contact with his biological mother until his adulthood.

brigitte bardot
With Sami Frey

However, even before the divorce, she was involved in a relationship with Sami Frey, whose name was mentioned as the reason for her divorce from Charrier. They met on the set of The Truth by Henri-Georges Clouzot in 1960 and their relationship continued for two years. After that, she lived with musician Bob Zagury, from 1963 to 1965.

brigitte bardot
With Gunter Sachs

Brigitte Bardot met the German photographer Gunter Sachs in July 1966 and fell for his arsenal of charm. With millions ready at hand, it was easy for Sachs to wow Bardot with every romantic gesture imaginable. Once, he went up in a helicopter to shower her with roses and the sight of the flowers gently falling into the garden stunned and mesmerized her. Completely swept away by the whirlwind romance, Bardot made a hasty decision and only after one month of courtship, Bardot and Sachs tied the knot on 14 July 1966 in a Vegas ceremony. But within a short while, Bardot began to detest the superficiality of it all and they divorced on 3 July 1969, though they had separated the previous year.

brigitte bardot

While married to Gunter Sachs, she had rejected Sean Connery's advances on the set of Shalako (1968) and later stated that she had never succumbed to his charm, but began dating Patrick Gilles, her co-star in The Bear and the Doll (1970), which ended in the spring of 1971.

brigitte bardot
With Serge Gainsbourg

Over the next few years, Bardot dated writer John Gilmore, singer Serge Gainsbourg, club owner Luigi Rizzi, bartender/ski instructor Christian Kalt, actor Warren Beatty and Laurent Vergez, her co-star in Don Juan, or If Don Juan Were a Woman (19730, an erotic drama film directed by her ex-husband Roger Vadim. In 1975, she entered a relationship with artist Miroslav Brozek, posed for some of his sculptures, lived together at La Madrague and separated in December 1979. At the end of that episode, Bardot had a live-in relationship with French TV producer Allain Bougrain-Dubourg from 1980 to 1985.

brigitte bardot
With Bernard dOrmale

At the age of 58, Brigitte Bardot met her fourth and current husband Bernard d'Ormale, a French industrialist, during a dinner and they married within a few months on 16 August 1992.

brigitte bardot
Elizabeth Taylor and her Lovers The Unbridled Life of Ava Gardner
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Author Details
Dibyendu Banerjee
Ex student of Scottish Church College. Served a Nationalised Bank for nearly 35 years. Authored novels in Bengali. Translated into Bengali novels/short stories of Leo Tolstoy, Eric Maria Remarque, D.H.Lawrence, Harold Robbins, Guy de Maupassant, Somerset Maugham and others. Also compiled collections of short stories from Africa and Third World. Interested in literature, history, music, sports and international films.
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