Bibi Andersson brought warmth and beauty to the films of Ingmar Bergman as she starred in 13 of the acclaimed director’s movies.
Bibi Andersson brought warmth and beauty to the films of Ingmar Bergman as she starred in 13 of the acclaimed director’s movies. Swedish actress Andersson got her start in the 1951 film “Miss Julie,” and she began working with Bergman in the same year — though her first role for him wasn’t in a film but in an ad for detergent. She stuck with the director enough that he cast her in a small role in “Smiles of a Summer Night” four years later, and she took on increasingly larger roles in his films including “The Seventh Seal” (1957) and “Persona” (1966), for which she won a National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actress. She acted in dozens of other films by other directors, including John Huston’s “The Kremlin Letter” (1970) and Robert Altman’s “Quintet” (1977). She also worked in the theatre, acting in and directing plays.
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Died: April 14, 2019 (Who else died on April 14?)
Details of death: Died in Stockholm at the age of 83.
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From ingénue to adult: Andersson grew up in Bergman’s films, beginning to work with him as a teen and continuing for decades. In her early appearances for the director, she was a symbol of the purity of youth, her blue eyes soft and her long blonde hair shining as she exuded warmth and innocence. In later films, such as “Persona,” she brought increased emotional complexity to her roles — and she shed the youthfully long tresses, too, appearing on screen in a pixie cut.
Notable quote: “Each time I see [‘Persona’], I know I accomplished what I set out to do as an actress, that I created a person.”
What people said about her: “Goodnight Bibi Andersson, whose incandescent presence and beguiling performances gave life to some of the most unforgettable moments in cinema history.” —Criterion Collection
“Bibi Andersson changed the game of screen performance forever. She could play fragile, ruinous, naïve and knowing — sometimes within the confines of a single performance.” —Film Qualia
Full obituary: New York Times
- Ingmar Bergman (1918–2007), acclaimed and influential filmmaker
- Robert Altman (1925–2006), Oscar-nominated director
- Ingrid Bergman (1915–1982), legendary Swedish actress