Marceau--born Marcel Mangel--is credited with reviving the art form after the Second World War, inspired by the ancient traditions popular in Europe, Japan and China, as well as silent-movie greats Buster Keaton and Charlie Chaplin.
His troupe, Compagnie Marcel Marceau, was the only one of its kind during the 1950s and ‘60s and it traveled the world, making Marceau a huge star.
He will be remembered by most for his clown character Bip, whom he created in 1947.
In the 1970s Marceau turned his attention to teaching new generations of mimes and in 2001 he was made a Goodwill Ambassador for the older generation by the United Nations.
His death on Saturday night was confirmed by his daughter Camilla and formally announced by the office of French Prime Minister Francois Fillon. Details of his funeral--which will take place at Paris' Pere Lachaise cemetery--have yet to be announced.
He was married three times and leaves two sons and two daughters.
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