The Man Who Laughs (1966 film)

The Man Who Laughs (Italian: L'uomo che ride) is a 1966 Italian historical drama film based on the novel of the same name by Victor Hugo.[1]

The Man Who Laughs
Directed bySergio Corbucci
Produced byJoseph Fryd
Screenplay byFilippo Sanjust
A. Issaverdens
A. Bertolotto
Luca Ronconi
Franco Rossetti
Sergio Corbucci
Giuseppe Patroni Griffi
Based onThe Man Who Laughs
by Victor Hugo
StarringJean Sorel
Lisa Gastoni
Ilaria Occhini
Edmund Purdom
Music byCarlo Savina
CinematographyEnzo Barboni
Edited byMario Serandrei
Sanson Film
Compagnie Internationale de Productions Cinématographiques
Distributed byMetro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date
  • 3 February 1966 (1966-02-03)
Running time
105 minutes


In this version, the character of Gwynplaine is renamed Angelo (played by Jean Sorel). His disfigurement is represented as a single broad slash across his mouth, crude yet convincing. While he deals with this, he also falls for a beautiful girl named Dea. The story (which is attributed, in the movie credits, to the director, producer and others involved in making the film, but not to Victor Hugo) has the disfigured acrobat being seduced by a noblewoman and in so doing becomes a henchman for the Borgias. Meanwhile, Dea miraculously acquires her eyesight and falls in love with a young nobleman. This nobleman is marked for death not just by Angelo's employers but by Angelo as well over the loss of Dea. Angelo's assassination attempt fails and he is mortally wounded. In the final scene the escaping Angelo staggers into a Leper Colony and falls dead.



  1. Roberto Poppi, Mario Pecorari. Dizionario del cinema italiano. I film. Gremese Editore, 2007. ISBN 8884405033.

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