Louis Malle (30 October 1932 – 23 November 1995) was a French film director, screenwriter, and producer. He has worked in both French cinema and Hollywood. His films include Ascenseur pour l'échafaud (1958), Atlantic City (1981), and Au revoir, les enfants (1987).
Malle was born into a wealthy industrialist family in Thumeries, Nord, France. He initially studied political science at the Sorbonne before turning to film studies at IDHEC instead.
He worked as the co-director and cameraman to Jacques Cousteau on the Oscar and Palme d'Or-winning (at the 1956 Academy Awards and Cannes Film Festival respectively) documentary The Silent World (1956) and assisted Robert Bresson on A Man Escaped (French title: Un condamné à mort s'est échappé ou Le vent souffle où il veut, 1956) before making his first feature, Ascenseur pour l'échafaud (released in the U.K. as Lift to the Scaffold and in the U.S. originally as Frantic, later as Elevator to the Gallows) in 1957. A taut thriller featuring an original score by Miles Davis, the film made an international film star of Jeanne Moreau, at the time a leading stage actress of the state Comédie-Française. Malle was 24 years old.