A Lovely Sad John Hughes Reminiscence from MollyPublished oddly as an op-ed in the NYTimes.
About 15 years ago, I wrote John from Paris, where I was living, to tell him how important he was to me. I had been on a François Truffaut kick and had just watched the series of “Antoine Doinel” films that he had made with the actor Jean-Pierre Léaud. There was something in the connection of actor and director that I recognized in us, particularly in the first film of the series, “400 Blows.”
After Truffaut died, I heard that Jean-Pierre Léaud had suffered a kind of breakdown, going so far as to drop flower pots on people from high-storied buildings. This is most likely a rumor, French film lore, but I think I now understand how painful it is to lose someone like that. John was my Truffaut. A week after I sent my letter, I received a bouquet of flowers as big as my apartment from John, thanking me for writing. I was so relieved to know that I had gotten through to him, and I feel grateful now for that sense of closure.
John was her Truffaut in just that sense.
I wish they could all have made more of the following years. I think she diminishes his later films (of course, she was not in them) in ways I do not buy.
But he made her a star and rightly; she was one. What she did with what he gave her was her concern in the end.
She sounds pretty happy - not every actress expects more than what she got.