AND HIS WIFE
TRAGEDY OF A FIGHT
"7 YEARS BAD LUCK."
“Daily Express" Correspondent.
PARIS, Sunday, Nov. 1.
Max Linder, the leading French cinema star, and his twenty-year-old wife, Hélène, committed suicide in the Hotel Balitimore, in the Avenue Kleber, here yesterday.
Both were discovered in a state of coma, and died without regaining consciousness, the woman at five in the afternoon, the husband twenty-five minutes after midnight.
Max Linder had taken the most elaborate precautions to make sure of death. He wrote six letters announcing his fate, he resigned from the film company of which he was chairman, he returned to an Italian film-renting company a sum of £2,500, and he cancelled the filming of a play in which he had contracted to appear.
They leave an eighteen months old baby girl, now in Switzerland, who will inherit the great fortune of her father, who rose from an obscure actor to world wide screen fame.
Max Linder's mother-in-law, Mme. Peters, had a presentiment early yesterday morning that all was not well with her daughter. About ten o'clock she went to the hotel where the couple had been staying for the past three weeks, but was told that her son-in-law had given strict instructions that he and his wife were not to be disturbed. The mother-in-law insisted, and finally the door of the bedroom was forced.
Side by side on the twin beds, and in their night attire, were the said breathing bodies of the cinema star and his wife. A bloodstained razor was on the table. A doctor was called, and the couple were rushed to a nursing home in the Rue Piccini, where they were placed in adjacent rooms.
The man and woman were found to have taken an abnormal dose of veronal and injections of morphia. Then Linder had opened the arteries in his own and his wife's wrists before lying down to die.
The actor met his wife when she was eighteen years old and eloped with her. About a year after their marriage the couple attempted to commit suicide in Vienna.
The tragedy of the film comedian's life was drug taking. He fought hard to overcome the habit, but in between bouts suffered cruelly from melancholia, and always, when in this condition, he stated that he would kill himself.
Max Linder, who has a cinema theatre in Paris named after himself, was immensely rich. The last time he worked he was paid £10,000 for working forty five days, and in his pocketbook at the time of his death was a contract guaranteeing him £15,000.
It seems curious that the last film of Max Linder's was entitled "Seven years' bad luck." (Daily Express, Nov. 2nd 1925)