Jean-Hugues Oppel


Jean-Hughes Oppel, a Franco-Swiss born in 1957, studied at the Lycée Charlemagne in Paris, and then at the École Nationale d’Opérateurs Louis-Lumière. He worked as second assistant cameraman on various films, including Saxo, directed by Ariel Zeitoun (1987), The Elegant Criminal (1990) by Francis Girod, Beatrice (1987) and Life and Nothing But (1988), both directed by Bertrand Tavernier. He was also first assistant cameraman on Roman Polanski’s Death and the Maiden (1994). He is now a full-time writer and lives in the Paris area with his four cats. When tackling his biography, it is hard to avoid such commonplaces as cinema, cigars, motorbikes and cats. He himself revels in them.

However, Jean-Hughes Oppel’s work is not so easily labelled and constrained. The tone varies greatly from one novel to the next. His writings thus resolutely emerge from a protean mental universe. Jean-Hughes Oppel has received many awards, notably the Critics’ Mystery Award and Grand Prix for Crime Literature.

Crime favourites

book : Darakan, by Claude Koltz, published in paperback by Rivages/Noir.

movie : Frozen River, directed by Courteney Hunt.

author : Jean-Patrick Manchette.