Thu Jul 20, 8:35 PM ET
French comedy director and writer Gerard Oury, whose 1966 film "La Grande Vadrouille" was the biggest-selling homegrown movie in the country's history, died Thursday at his home in St Tropez. He was 87.
Starring the comic duo Louis de Funes and Bourvil, "La Grande Vadrouille" sold a staggering 17.2 million tickets, a figure not bested until "Titanic" set sail in 1998 with 21 million tickets.
Oury's other credits included "Le Corniaud," "La Folie des Grandeurs" and "The Adventures of Rabbi Jacob." Tributes from the world of arts and politics flooded in with French president Jacques Chirac hailing Oury as a "master of laughter and magnificent creator of myths." He will be buried in Paris on Monday.