French actor Gaspard Ulil, known for appearing in Chanel perfume commercials as well as film and television roles, died on Wednesday following a skiing accident in the Alps, according to his agent’s office. He was 37 years old.
Ulliel portrayed the young Hannibal Lecter in 2007’s “Hannibal Rising” and fashion mogul Yves Saint Laurent in the 2014 biopic “Saint Laurent.” He is also in the upcoming Marvel series “Moon Night” and was the advertising face of Chanel men’s fragrance Bleu de Chanel.
The Savoie Prosecutor’s Office said Uliel was hospitalized Tuesday after an accident at the Rosier ski area in the Savoie region. The actor’s agent’s office said Ulil died on Wednesday. It did not provide any details.
Local broadcaster France Bleu said Uliel had been hospitalized with a skull injury, and had apparently collided with another skier at a crossing point on the slopes. According to France Blue, the other skier was not hospitalized. Police and prosecutors would not discuss the details of the accident.
Ulliel debuted in television while still in middle school and went on to win two of France’s top cinema awards, the César.
Tributes poured in from stunned fans and corridors of power. French Prime Minister Jean Casteux tweeted a tribute saying, “Gaspard Ulyll grew up with cinema and cinema grew up with him. They loved each other madly.”
The accident conjured up memories of the time when Formula One great Michael Schumacher hit his head in a ski accident in 2013 at the French ski resort of Meribel, about 50 kilometers (30 mi) from where Uliel was skiing. Both were treated at Grenoble University Hospital.
Schumacher, 53, has not been seen in public in eight years, and little is known about his physical and mental condition. The German auto racing legend suffered serious head injuries when he fell and hit the right side of his head on a rock at the side of a demarcated slope. He was skiing with his teenage son during a family vacation in the Alps.
Following Uliel’s accident, the mountain police service for the Rosier ski area said its personnel were carrying out five or six rescue operations a day as the snow had hardened in recent days.
A 5-year-old girl was killed after a skier crashed into the neighboring Haute-Savoie region on Saturday. The man was handed preliminary murder charges, according to the Haute-Savoie prosecutor, who cited excessive speeding as a possible cause of the accident.