What possessed the cameraman who shot so many French classics to give up? And why does he now prefer to work on his parquet floor than look at the lens for this portrait? A look back at a very active career in which the actress Isabelle Adjani played an important role both professionally and privately.
For twenty years, Bruno Nuytten (1945) was a popular and highly regarded cameraman. He worked with directors including Marguerite Duras, André Téchiné and Claude Berri and won three Césars, for instance for Barocco (1976) and his own film, Camille Claudel (1988), in which his ex-wife, actress Isabelle Adjani, played the leading role. At the end of the 1980s, he suddenly turned his back on the film world.
In Nuytten/Film, camerawoman Caroline Champetier (Holy Motors, Des hommes et des dieux) questions him about this decision and the craft which Nuytten regards as "thankless" because it does not get much recognition. Yet Champetier’s film is not a portrait of a bitter man. He consciously decided to stop, primarily because he felt encapsulated, too much part of a machine. As a result he no longer felt free and there was no space to experiment, which he liked doing. Nuytten is a real craftsman, as is emphasised by Champetier as she films him laying a parquet floor.