Jean-Marc Vallée, director of Big Little Lies, dies at 58

Jean-Marc Vallée
Jean-Marc Vallée

Jean-Marc Vallée, a Quebecois director, and the man behind films like “Dallas Buyers Club” and television shows like “Big Little Lies,” has passed away in his chalet outside of Quebec City, Canada. He was 58 years old at the time. The cause of death was, reportedly, unknown at the time.

Vallee’s career expedition

“Jean-Marc stood for innovation, sincerity, and attempting things differently,” his producing partner Nathan Ross said in a statement. He was a real artist as well as a nice and caring person. Everyone who worked with him couldn’t help but notice his ability and vision. To me, he was a buddy, a creative collaborator, and an older brother. The maestro will be sadly missed, but it is comforting to know that his magnificent style and impactful work will continue on.”


Jean-Marc Vallée

Vallée was nominated for an Academy Award for “Dallas Buyers Club,” which won Oscars for Jared Leto and Matthew McConaughey in 2013. The film is based on the true story of Ron Woodroof, an AIDS patient who used the “Dallas Buyers Club” to import prescription medications into Texas and distribute them to other AIDS patients.

He directed “Wild,” starring Reese Witherspoon and based on the blockbuster memoir about a former heroin addict who treks the Pacific Crest Trail to find herself, the following year.

Vallee’s collaborated with HBO extensively

He continued to collaborate with Witherspoon on HBO’s “Big Little Lies,” for which he received an Emmy nomination for directing a limited series, movie, or special. The limited series, which starred Laura Dern, Nicole Kidman, and Shailene Woodley and was based on the blockbuster Liane Moriarty novel, was praised for its lushly photographed look at the lifestyles of wealthy coastal families who must deal with a tragic murder in their midst.


Jean-Marc Vallée

Vallée’s following HBO project was “Sharp Objects,” a dramatic HBO miniseries based on a famous book.

In a statement made by HBO, “Jean-Marc Vallée was a brilliant, fiercely driven director, a truly great talent who filled every scene with a very visceral, emotional truth.” “He was also a deeply loving man who put his heart and soul into every performer he coached.” We are heartbroken to learn of his untimely death, and we send our condolences to his sons, Alex and Émile, as well as his extended family and longstanding producing partner, Nathan Ross.”

Vallée, who was born in Montreal, studied film at the Université du Québec. He made his debut feature picture, “Black List,” after filming music videos and short films.


He directed “The Young Victoria,” which received three Academy Award nominations, after making the acclaimed Quebec film “C.R.A.Z.Y.” in 2005, which was based on the life of a close friend. “Cafe de Flore,” “Los Locos,” a Western written by and starring Mario Van Peebles, “Loser Love,” and “Demolition,” starring Jake Gyllenhaal, were among his other projects.

“Gorilla and the Bird,” based on a biography by Zack McDermott about a public defender who has a sudden psychotic break, was intended to be directed by Vallée for HBO.

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