Chris Marker

Born Christian François Bouche-Villeneuve on July 29, 1921 in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France, Chris Marker was a cinematic essayist and audio-visual poet.

After the Second World War, Marker began as a writer, publishing his first book in 1949. In the 1950s he turned to documentary filmmaking. Among his classic works from this period are Letter from Siberia, Cuba Si!, Le Joli Mai, and La Jetée. In the '60s and '70s he was actively involved with SLON, a filmmaking collective dedicated to activist production.

Marker reemerged to make films under his own name again in 1977 with Le Fond de l'air est rouge (English title: A Grin Without A Cat).

Creatively reworking his life as if editing one of his own films, Marker made films on other filmmakers during the '80s and '90s, including the renowned One Day in the Life of Andrei Arsenevich. He also explored video and computer-generated imagery with a continued emphasis on the intersection between personal and political themes in films such as The Case of the Grinning Cat, which was released in English in 2006.

A pioneer auteur filmmaker and an original voice in world cinema for over 50 years, Marker passed away on his birthday, July 29, 2012. He is widely accepted to be one of the most innovative and influential filmmakers in modern cinema history.

Icarus Films is proud to distribute over 15 of Chris Marker's films, including Bestiary, a collection of his short animal films, as well as Far From Vietnam and Class of Struggle—two collaborative productions that he helped initiate.

Icarus Films also distributes a film about Marker's legacy: To Chris Marker, An Unsent Letter, a posthumous homage by Emiko Omori. Discover more of our featured filmmakers.

New York Times obituary by Dennis Lim

A tribute by J. Hoberman in The New York Review of Books

"If ever there was a filmmaker to come up with a Theory of Everything, it's Marker." —TimeOut

"Chris Marker, the most poetic and original of documentarists." —The Guardian


In Chris Marker's film, workers at a textile factory on strike in pre-May '68 France, not just for more money, but for a different way of life.

Mario Marret and Chris Marker | 2003 | 39 minutes | Color | French | English subtitles

Some months after the fall of the Berlin wall, Chris Marker shot this passionate documentary, reflecting the state of the place and its spirit with remarkable acuity.

Chris Marker | 2021 | 29 minutes | Color | French | English subtitles

François Crémieux served as a French UN peacekeeper near the Bosnian town of Bihać. He never saw combat, but he was left deeply shaken by the experience.

Chris Marker | 2021 | 25 minutes | Color | French | English subtitles

In his newest film, French cinema-essayist Chris Marker reflects on French and international politics, art and culture at the start of the new millennium.

Chris Marker | 2006 | 58 minutes | Color | English

Five Chris Marker short films devoted to animals collected together and available for the first time!

Chris Marker | 2006 | 17 minutes | Color | No dialog

In one of Chris Marker's few fiction films, political dissidents seek refuge in a foreign embassy after a military coup d'état in an unidentified country.

Chris Marker | 2007 | 21 minutes | Color | English

The landmark collaboration between Jean-Luc Godard, Joris Ivens, William Klein, Claude Lelouch, Chris Marker and Alain Resnais in protest of the Vietnam war.

Jean-Luc Godard, Joris Ivens, William Klein, Claude Lelouch, Chris Marker, and Alain Resnais | 2013 | 115 minutes | Color | English; French | English subtitles

Chris Marker's epic film-essay on the worldwide political wars of the 60's and 70's: Vietnam, Che, May '68, Prague, Chile, and the fate of the New Left.

Chris Marker | 2001 | 178 minutes | Color | English | English subtitles

This two-disc set includes Chris Marker's tribute to Russian film director Alexander Medvedkin, Medvedkin's silent classic HAPPINESS (1934), and loads of extras.

Chris Marker | 1998 | 116 minutes | Color

Chris Marker and Pierre Lhomme's legendary portrait of Paris and Parisians at the close of the Algerian war.

Chris Marker and Pierre Lhomme | 2013 | 145 minutes | English; French | English subtitles

In Chris Marker's futuristic reverie, game-developer Laura creates a video game based on the WWII Battle of Okinawa.

Chris Marker | 2014 | 106 minutes | Color | French | English subtitles

Two films made collaboratively by Chris Marker and striking workers in 1968 and 1969.

Chris Marker and The Medvedkin Group | 2014 | 76 minutes | Color | French | English subtitles

Filmmaker Chris Marker's homage to his friend and colleague, Andrei Tarkovsky. A unique and intimate portrait of the legendary Russian filmmaker.

Chris Marker | 2000 | 55 minutes | Color | English | English subtitles

Chris Marker takes thirteen words of Greek origin that cover an array of subjects in order to find the ancient Greece that accompanies our thoughts, inspires our writers, influences our politics and ideals of beauty.

Chris Marker | 2018 | 338 minutes | Color | French; Greek; English | English subtitles

Bosnian refugees create a news program about their lives.

Chris Marker | 2021 | 28 minutes | Color | English | Closed Captioned

This tapestry of still photographs, subject-skipping montage and rapid shuttle of wit and philosophy is pure Chris Marker.

Yannick Bellon & Chris Marker | 2003 | 42 minutes | Color | English

Chronicle of the 1967 Mobilization to End the War in Vietnam protest march on the Pentagon, by documentary essayist Chris Marker. Also on this disc is a second film, THE EMBASSY.

Chris Marker and François Reichenbach | 2007 | 26 minutes | Color | English