In his sketches, popular French comedian'Fernand Raynaud' was often bullied by a self-righteous sharp-tongued spinster called Mademoiselle Lelongbec, the parish organist. Tall, lean and unattractive, Maximilenne (born Henriette Genty in 1884) seemed born to play the part and she WAS the obvious choice for director Robert Darène when, in 1958, he prepared to film a Fernand Raynaud's vehicle entitled "Houla Houla". Donning the attire of Mlle Lelongbec Maximilenne had the distinguished opportunity to nag poor Fernand, on the big screen this time around. A role that epitomizes a long screen career, spanning the three decades between the advent of the sound period and the birth of the French New Wave. During this time, she embodied innumerable female authority figures such as a mother superior ("La route enchantée"), a school mistress ("Simplet"), the headmistress of a reform school("Prison sans barreaux"), a Salvation Army general ("L'armoire volante") or a princess ("Le disque 1413"). She

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