Simone Signoret (25 March 1921 – 30 September 1985) was a French film actress often hailed as one of France’s greatest movie stars. She became the first French person to win an Academy Award, for her role in Room at the Top (1959). In her lifetime she also received a BAFTA, an Emmy, Golden Globe, Cannes Film Festival recognition and the Silver Bear for Best Actress.
Les Diaboliques, released as Diabolique in the United States and variously translated as The Devils or The Fiends, is a 1955 French black-and-white feature film directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot, starring Simone Signoret, Vera Clouzot and Paul Meurisse. It is based on the novel Celle qui n’était plus (She Who Was No More) by Pierre Boileau and Thomas Narcejac. The story blends elements of thriller and horror to great effect, with the plot focusing on a woman and her husband’s mistress who conspire to murder the man; after the crime is committed, however, his body disappears, and a number of strange occurrences ensue.
Clouzot, right after finishing Wages of Fear allegedly snatched the screenplay rights from master of suspense, director Alfred Hitchcock. This movie apparently helped inspire Hitchcock’s Psycho. Robert Bloch himself, the author of novel “Psycho”, has stated in an interview that his all-time favorite horror film is Diaboliques.