Photographer and Softcore Director Just Jaeckin Dead at 82

Eric Fougere/Getty
Eric Fougere/Getty

The multidisciplinary French artist Just Jaeckin passed away Sept. 6 from cancer at the age of 82, his agent confirmed to The New York Times on Sunday.

Jaeckin was well-regarded for his artistic versatility, landing photographs in Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, and Vogue, and achieving international success with his debut film, the 1974 softcore drama Emmanuelle.

Jaeckin was able to develop a reputation as a photographer for the stars in the 1960s, nabbing black-and-white shots of the likes of Brigitte Bardot, Jane Fonda, and Jane Birkin and Serge Gainsbourg.

His first film, Emmanuelle, followed a young woman’s journey to Bangkok in discovering her sexual appetite. It grossed nearly $9 million—$53 million in today’s dollars—in ticket sales in the U.S. alone, a runaway success that inspired a series of sequels. It was Columbia Pictures first X-rated feature, and although it was and remains controversial for its depiction of women, it was a hit internationally, including in Germany, Spain, and Japan.

Jaeckin would go on to direct seven other films, including The Story of O, Lady Chatterley’s Lover, and The Perils of Gwendoline, before returning to a life of photography and sculpture.

Jaeckin is survived by his wife, Anne Jaeckin, and his daughter, Julia Jaeckin.

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