Rotund, balding, French comic actor Jacques Villeret is perhaps best known internationally for his performances in the play "The Dinner Game", though he acted in French film and TV productions for over 30 years with numerous renowned directors. Villeret studied drama at the Paris Conservatory and first took to the stage doing comedic and vaudeville acting before playing early roles in dramas and romances, including Claude Lelouch's "And Now My Love". He soon dipped into comedy, with Lelouch's "Robert et Robert" (earning his first César Award), and then as an alien who loves earthly cabbage soup in "La soupe aux choux", the latter's popularity making him a star at home. Villeret worked steadily through the '80s with major directors including Patrice Leconte, Jean-Luc Godard, and Claude Sautet before slowing his output in the mid '90s, battling depression and alcoholism. He rose again at the end of that decade, taking his stage character to the big screen in the very successful "The Dinner Game" (the basis for the American comedy "Dinner for Schmucks"). Despite a difficult divorce and tax problems, he continued to appear in a number of well-received films, including more dramatic parts, but he died of a liver hemorrhage at age 53.