Louis de Funès: why his heirs do not receive money from the receipts of his films?

Louis de Funès: why his heirs do not receive money from the receipts of his films?

Every year, Louis de Funès’ films bring in millions of profits for Gaumont. A pharaonic sum of which his three heirs never see the color! We explain why…

What could the saga of the Constable, Wing or thigh, Megalomania or Rabbi Jacob ? All are films in which starred Louis de Funes. During his career, he acted in nearly one hundred and fifty films, which makes him one of the most famous comedians of French cinema. It was on January 27, 1983 that the actor bowed out, at the age of 68. He who had suffered several heart attacks was victim of illness at bedtime. It was at 8:30 p.m. that he was pronounced dead, after several attempts by doctors to save him at Nantes hospital.

Behind him, Louis de Funès left his three sons, Daniel, Patrick and Oliver. A whole clan that hasn’t really had the opportunity to enjoy its heritage. Three people are still part of his estate today: Olivier, Patrick and the widow of his son Daniel, who died of a heart attack in 2017. Every year, Louis de Funès’ films are broadcast on television and report nearly 500 million euros to Gaumontas revealed Le Figaro in 2020.

Louis de Funès, a “very economical” man

A figure whose three heirs never see the color! “When Louis de Funès finally achieved success, after 50 years, he always asked for cash rather than percentages on future receipts“ explained Alain Kruger, curator of the exhibition on De Funès at the French cinematheque in 2020. Bertrand Dicale, one of the actor’s biographers, added: “He was afraid of being scammed and having to supervise the accounts, which in advance prevented him from sleeping. Then, like all people who have known poverty, he has always been careful to be well paid (…) Once the price was fixed, he just wanted his check on time. He was very picky about it”.

Described as a man “very economical” according to biographer Jean-Jacques Jelot-Blanc, Louis de Funès was not one to “to party” once the day of filming is over. He liked to cultivate his roses and his vegetable garden. This will earn him a lot of scorn from some actors, like Jean Marais”, supported the biographer. More ant than cicada, that’s how Louis de Funès was.

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