Sovereigntist filmmaker Pierre Falardeau dies

Quebec filmmaker, writer and outspoken sovereigntist Pierre Falardeau has died of cancer at the age of 62.

Quebec filmmaker, writer and outspoken sovereigntist Pierre Falardeau has died of cancer at the age of 62.

The University of Montreal's hospital centre announced early Saturday that Falardeau had passed away Friday night.

Known as a colourful character, Falardeau made a name for himself creating documentaries and writings that focused on the political identity of Quebecers.

Born Dec. 28, 1946, in Montreal, Falardeau grew up to study anthropology but turned to making films, directing his first short, Continuons le combat, in 1971. That movie compared sport fighting with the search for a Quebec identity.  

He also made satirical films such as Elvis Gratton – a trilogy about an impersonator — but became known for his more polemical pieces such as Pea Soup, released in 1978.

That documentary, which took six years to complete, chronicled the alienation of Quebecers as a people who had no economic power.

His other political works included Octobre, about the 1970 October crisis, and 15 février 1839, which examined the Patriotes movement and what led to the Lower Canada Rebellion.

Also a writer, he often published in the independent newspaper Le Couac and the sovereigntist journal Le Québécois, and he wrote collections of essays as well.

Never one to stay quiet, Falardeau once urged federalist-supporting anglophones to leave Quebec, and a few years ago, he demonstrated in Quebec City on Canada Day against what he deemed a "colonizing power."