Gaston Leroux

Last updated
Gaston Leroux
Leroux in 1907
BornGaston Louis Alfred Leroux
(1868-05-06)6 May 1868
Paris, France
Died15 April 1927(1927-04-15) (aged 58)
Nice, France
Occupation Journalist, author
Notable works The Phantom of the Opera

Gaston Louis Alfred Leroux (6 May 1868 [1]  15 April 1927) was a French journalist and author of detective fiction.

Journalist person who collects, writes and distributes news and other information

A journalist is a person who collects, writes, or distributes news or other current information to the public. A journalist's work is called journalism. A journalist can work with general issues or specialize in certain issues. However, most journalists tend to specialize, and by cooperating with other journalists, produce journals that span many topics. For example, a sports journalist covers news within the world of sports, but this journalist may be a part of a newspaper that covers many different topics.

An author is the creator or originator of any written work such as a book or play, and is thus also a writer. More broadly defined, an author is "the person who originated or gave existence to anything" and whose authorship determines responsibility for what was created.

Detective fiction is a subgenre of crime fiction and mystery fiction in which an investigator or a detective—either professional, amateur or retired—investigates a crime, often murder. The detective genre began around the same time as speculative fiction and other genre fiction in the mid-nineteenth century and has remained extremely popular, particularly in novels. Some of the most famous heroes of detective fiction include C. Auguste Dupin, Sherlock Holmes, and Hercule Poirot. Juvenile stories featuring The Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, and The Boxcar Children have also remained in print for several decades.


In the English-speaking world, he is best known for writing the novel The Phantom of the Opera (Le Fantôme de l'Opéra, 1910), which has been made into several film and stage productions of the same name, notably the 1925 film starring Lon Chaney, and Andrew Lloyd Webber's 1986 musical. His novel The Mystery of the Yellow Room is also one of the most famous locked-room mysteries ever.

<i>The Phantom of the Opera</i> novel by Gaston Leroux

The Phantom of the Opera is a novel by French writer Gaston Leroux. It was first published as a serialization in Le Gaulois from 23 September 1909, to 8 January 1910. It was published in volume form in late March 1910 by Pierre Lafitte and directed by Aluel Malinao. The novel is partly inspired by historical events at the Paris Opera during the nineteenth century and an apocryphal tale concerning the use of a former ballet pupil's skeleton in Carl Maria von Weber's 1841 production of Der Freischütz. It has been successfully adapted into various stage and film adaptations, most notable of which are the 1925 film depiction featuring Lon Chaney, and Andrew Lloyd Webber's 1986 musical.

<i>The Phantom of the Opera</i> (1925 film) 1925 film by Lon Chaney, Edward Sedgwick, Rupert Julian

The Phantom of the Opera is a 1925 American silent horror film adaptation of Gaston Leroux's 1910 novel Le Fantôme de l'Opéra, directed by Rupert Julian and starring Lon Chaney in the title role of the deformed Phantom who haunts the Paris Opera House, causing murder and mayhem in an attempt to make the woman he loves a star. The film remains most famous for Chaney's ghastly, self-devised make-up, which was kept a studio secret until the film's premiere. The film was released on November 25, 1925.

Andrew Lloyd Webber British composer

Andrew Lloyd Webber, Baron Lloyd-Webber is an English composer and impresario of musical theatre. Several of his musicals have run for more than a decade both in the West End and on Broadway. He has composed 13 musicals, a song cycle, a set of variations, two film scores, and a Latin Requiem Mass. Several of his songs have been widely recorded and were hits outside of their parent musicals, notably "The Music of the Night" and "All I Ask of You" from The Phantom of the Opera, "I Don't Know How to Love Him" from Jesus Christ Superstar, "Don't Cry for Me, Argentina" from Evita, "Any Dream Will Do" from Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and "Memory" from Cats. In 2001 The New York Times referred to him as "the most commercially successful composer in history". Ranked the "fifth most powerful person in British culture" by The Daily Telegraph in 2008, the lyricist Don Black stated "Andrew more or less single-handedly reinvented the musical."

Life and career

Leroux was born in Paris in 1868 and died in 1927 in Nice. He went to school in Normandy and studied law in Paris, graduating in 1889. He inherited millions of francs and lived wildly until he nearly reached bankruptcy. In 1890, he began working as a court reporter and theater critic for L'Écho de Paris . His most important journalism came when he began working as an international correspondent for the Paris newspaper Le Matin . He was present at, and covered, the 1905 Russian Revolution.

Paris Capital of France

Paris is the capital and most populous city of France, with an area of 105 square kilometres and an official estimated population of 2,140,526 residents as of 1 January 2019. Since the 17th century, Paris is one of Europe's major centres of finance, diplomacy, commerce, fashion, science, and the arts.

Nice Prefecture and commune in Provence-Alpes-Côte dAzur, France

Nice is the seventh most populous urban area in France and the capital of the Alpes-Maritimes département. The metropolitan area of Nice extends beyond the administrative city limits, with a population of about 1 million on an area of 721 km2 (278 sq mi). Located in the French Riviera, on the south east coast of France on the Mediterranean Sea, at the foot of the Alps, Nice is the second-largest French city on the Mediterranean coast and the second-largest city in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region after Marseille. Nice is approximately 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) from the principality of Monaco and 30 kilometres (19 mi) from the French-Italian border. Nice's airport serves as a gateway to the region.

Normandy Administrative region of France

Normandy is one of the 18 regions of France, roughly referring to the historical Duchy of Normandy.

Another case at which he was present involved the investigation and in-depth coverage of the former Paris Opera (presently housing the Paris Ballet). [1] The basement contained a cell that held prisoners of the Paris Commune.

Palais Garnier opera house in Paris, France

The Palais Garnier is a 1,979-seat opera house, which was built from 1861 to 1875 for the Paris Opera. It was called the Salle des Capucines, because of its location on the Boulevard des Capucines in the 9th arrondissement of Paris, but soon became known as the Palais Garnier, in recognition of its opulence and its architect, Charles Garnier. The theatre is also often referred to as the Opéra Garnier and historically was known as the Opéra de Paris or simply the Opéra, as it was the primary home of the Paris Opera and its associated Paris Opera Ballet until 1989, when the Opéra Bastille opened at the Place de la Bastille. The Paris Opera now uses the Palais Garnier mainly for ballet.

Paris Commune revolutionary city council of Paris 1871

The Paris Commune was a radical socialist and revolutionary government that ruled Paris from 18 March to 28 May 1871. The Franco-Prussian War had led to the capture of Emperor Napoleon III in September 1870, the collapse of the Second French Empire, and the beginning of the Third Republic. Because Paris was under siege for four months, the Third Republic moved its capital to Tours. A hotbed of working-class radicalism, Paris was primarily defended during this time by the often politicised and radical troops of the National Guard rather than regular Army troops. Paris surrendered to the Prussians on 28 January 1871, and in February Adolphe Thiers, the new chief executive of the French national government, signed an armistice with Prussia that disarmed the Army but not the National Guard.

He suddenly left journalism in 1907 and began writing fiction. In 1919, he and Arthur Bernède formed their own film company, Société des Cinéromans, to publish novels and simultaneously turn them into films. He first wrote a mystery novel titled Le mystère de la chambre jaune (1908; The Mystery of the Yellow Room), starring the amateur detective Joseph Rouletabille. Leroux's contribution to French detective fiction is considered a parallel to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's in the United Kingdom and Edgar Allan Poe's in the United States.

Arthur Bernède French writer, poet, opera librettist, and playwright

Arthur Bernède was a French writer, poet, opera libretist, and playwright.

The Société des Cinéromans was a French film production company of the silent movie era.

<i>The Mystery of the Yellow Room</i> novel by Gaston Leroux

The Mystery of the Yellow Room is a mystery novel written by French author Gaston Leroux. One of the first locked-room mystery novels, it was first published serially in France in the periodical L'Illustration from September 1907 to November 1907, then in its own right in 1908.

Leroux published his most famous work, The Phantom of the Opera, as a serial in 1909 and 1910, and as a book in 1910 (with an English translation appearing in 1911).

Leroux was made a Chevalier de la Legion d'honneur in 1909.


The Adventures of Rouletabille

Chéri Bibi

Other novels

Still of Lon Chaney in The Phantom of the Opera (1925) ChaneyPhantomoftheOpera.jpg
Still of Lon Chaney in The Phantom of the Opera (1925)
Poster of the film adaptation of Balaoo in 1913. Balaoo the Demon Baboon 1913.jpg
Poster of the film adaptation of Balaoo in 1913.

Short stories

Gaston Leroux's "Not'olympe" was translated into English as "The Mystery of the Four Husbands" and published in the December 1929 issue of Weird Tales. Weird Tales December 1929.jpg
Gaston Leroux's "Not'olympe" was translated into English as "The Mystery of the Four Husbands" and published in the December 1929 issue of Weird Tales .




Related Research Articles

Victorien Sardou French dramatist

Victorien Sardou was a French dramatist. He is best remembered today for his development, along with Eugène Scribe, of the well-made play. He also wrote several plays that were made into popular 19th-century operas such as La Tosca (1887) on which Giacomo Puccini's opera Tosca (1900) is based, and Fédora (1882) and Madame Sans-Gêne (1893) that provided the subjects for the lyrical dramas Fedora (1898) and Madame Sans-Gêne (1915) by Umberto Giordano.

Alain Robbe-Grillet 1922-2008 French agricultural engineer, filmmaker and writer

Alain Robbe-Grillet was a French writer and filmmaker. He was one of the figures most associated with the Nouveau Roman trend of the 1960s, along with Nathalie Sarraute, Michel Butor and Claude Simon. Alain Robbe-Grillet was elected a member of the Académie française on 25 March 2004, succeeding Maurice Rheims at seat No. 32. He was married to Catherine Robbe-Grillet.

Claude Farrère French writer

Claude Farrère, pseudonym of Frédéric-Charles Bargone, was a French author of novels, many of which are based in exotic locations as Istanbul, Saigon, or Nagasaki.

Boileau-Narcejac is the nom de plume by which French crime fiction writers Pierre Boileau and Pierre Ayraud, aka Thomas Narcejac collaborated. A number of their publications were adapted for cinema, including Celle qui n'était plus, as Les Diaboliques (1955), directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot, and D'entre les morts, as Vertigo (1958), directed by Alfred Hitchcock. They also notably adapted the novel Les yeux sans visage by Jean Redon into the horror movie known in English as Eyes Without a Face (1960).

Hugues Aufray French singer

Hugues Jean Marie Auffray, better known as Hugues Aufray, is a French singer-songwriter and guitarist.

There have been many literary and dramatic works based on Gaston Leroux's novel The Phantom of the Opera, ranging from stage musicals to films to children's books. Some well known stage and screen adaptations of the novel are the 1925 film and the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical ; Susan Kay's 1990 Phantom is one of the best known novels and includes in-depth study of the title character's life and experiences.

Joseph Rouletabille fictional character

Joseph Rouletabille is a fictional character created by Gaston Leroux, a French writer and journalist. Rouletabille is a journalist and amateur sleuth featured in several novels and other works, often presented as a more capable thinker than the police.

Robert de Flers French playwright, opera librettist, and journalist

Robert de Flers was a French playwright, opera librettist, and journalist.

Gaston Arman de Caillavet French playwright

Gaston Arman de Caillavet was a French playwright.

Paul Halter is a writer of crime fiction known for his locked room mysteries.

Le Parfum de la dame en noir is a 1949 French crime film directed by Louis Daquin and starring Hélène Perdrière, Serge Reggiani and Marcel Herrand. It is an adaptation of the novel The Perfume of the Lady in Black by Gaston Leroux.

The Mystery of the Yellow Room is a 1949 French crime film directed by Henri Aisner and starring Hélène Perdrière, Serge Reggiani and Pierre Renoir. It is an adaptation of the novel The Mystery of the Yellow Room by Gaston Leroux.

The Phantom of Paris is a 1931 American pre-Code drama film directed by John S. Robertson and written by Bess Meredyth, Edwin Justus Mayer and John Meehan. The film stars John Gilbert and Leila Hyams, and is based on the novel Chéri-Bibi et Cécily by Gaston Leroux. The film was released on September 12, 1931, by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

<i>The Mystery of the Yellow Room</i> (1919 film) 1919 film by Josef von Sternberg, Emile Chautard

The Mystery of the Yellow Room is a 1919 American crime drama film made by the Mayflower Photoplay Company and distributed through Realart Pictures Corporation. Émile Chautard was a French actor, director, and producer. Chautard was 55 years old when "The Mystery of the Yellow Room" was released in 1919. The Mystery of the Yellow Room was first a novel by Gaston Leroux. The novel was one of the first locked room mystery crime fiction novels. It was first published in France in the periodical L'Illustration from September 1907 to November 1907, then in its own right as a book in 1908.

<i>The Man Who Returns from Afar</i> 1950 film by Joan Castanyer

The Man Who Returns from Afar is a 1950 French thriller film directed by Jean Castanier and starring Annabella, Paul Bernard and María Casares. It is based on the 1916 novel of the same title by Gaston Leroux.

The Mystery of the Yellow Room is a 2003 French comedy film based on the novel of the same name by Gaston Leroux.