That Most Important Thing: Love

That Most Important Thing: Love
Directed by Andrzej Żuławski
Written by Christopher Frank
Andrzej Żuławski
Starring Romy Schneider
Jacques Dutronc
Fabio Testi
Klaus Kinski
Music by Georges Delerue
Distributed by S. N. Prodis (France)
Seaberg Film Distr. (US) dubbed
Release dates
February 12, 1975
Running time
105 mins (cut version)
113 mins (director's cut, NTSC)
108 mins (director's cut, PAL)
Country France
Language French

That Most Important Thing: Love (original French title: L'important c'est d'aimer) is a French film directed by Polish filmmaker Andrzej Żuławski. It tells the story of a passionate love relationship between Nadine Chevalier, a B-List actress (Schneider) and Servais Mont, a photographer (Testi) in the violent and unforgiving French show biz.

In 1975, Żuławski coadapted and directed this movie, based on the novel by Christopher Frank La Nuit américaine (unrelated to the 1973 François Truffaut film of that name). The success in France was such —it was featuring the very popular actress Romy Schneider and French singer Jacques Dutronc— that it allowed Żuławski to come back to Poland. The film had a total of 1,544,986 admissions in France.[1]

Romy Schneider obtained the inaugural César Award for Best Actress for this role and Pedro Almodóvar dedicated his film All About My Mother partially to her in this role.[2]


Servais Mont, a photographer, meets Nadine Chevalier who earns her money starring in cheap soft-core movies. Trying to help her, he borrows the money from the loan sharks to finance the theatrical production of Richard III and gives Nadine a part. Nadine is torn between Servais, with whom she is falling in love, and her husband Jacques, to whom she has moral obligations.



  1. L'important c'est d'aimer at JP's Box-Office
  2. Comments by Pedro Almodóvar on All About My Mother; the other dedicatees were Gena Rowlands in Opening Night and Bette Davis in All About Eve.
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