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Main role of Das süsse Mädel (the sweet girl) in Der Reigen by Otto Schenk (released 1973-01 Italy, 1973-10-25 Germany, 1974-4-24 France).

As ‘Das süsse Mädel’
in Der Reigen, 1972

Main role of Antonia in Cari genitori by Enrico Maria Salerno (released 1973-2-9 Italy).

[BuetJ] Maria Schneider considers a role in Indian Summer by Zurlini.

1972-02 till -04: filming of Last Tango in Paris, by Bertolucci, main role of ‘the girl’.

[CV4Ub] Bernardo Bertolucci is preparing Last Tango in Paris. His actors: Jane Fonda and Jean-Louis Trintignant. At the time Bertolucci is one of the most prestigious directors in Europe, one doesn’t refuse a role in a film by Bertolucci! Exept Jean-Louis Trintignant! He refuses the role, politely but firmly, because he is not at ease with the nudity. Bertolucci does not yet know that Jane Fonda too will literally let him eat his scenario! In fact, nobody wants to do his film! Delon declines, Belmondo laughs him in the face, Deneuve evades, Natalie Wood doesn’t even answer!

At last one of the producers, on the verge of abandoning the film, dreams of Marlon Brando. Why Brando? How? Mystery.

The mythic actor of the 50s reached the rock bottom of his fame. Nobody in Hollywood wants him anymore, not even to spread the sandwiches. They stake on what is left from his reputation in the eyes of the Europeans. They offer him the role, he accepts.

Soon Brando embarks for Paris, things accellerate and Bertolucci still does not have his actress. It will be Maria Schneider, 19 years old, available.

[BuetJ] “It was by a mere fluke. I was very close with Dominique Sanda. She was going to do the film with Jean-Louis Trintignant, but she was pregnant. She had a big photo of the two of us. Bertolucci saw it. He let me do a casting. I read the scenario, which I did not understand at once. I did not like to do it, but everyone said: ‘What, with Brando...’ I hesitated until the last moment, because I wanted to do a film of Zurlini, with Delon and dancer Sonia Petrovna.”

[Chtn] The thought of being presented to Brando made her crazy with panic. “It was he who came to me on the stage. I wanted the ground to open up and swallow me! He took me in his arms and said: ‘Come on, don’t be afraid. We are going to shoot for two months together, but that will pass very well, you’ll see...”

[Kraft] ... Brando asked her what her astrological sign is on the first day of shooting, and seemed relieved upon learning it was the same as his--Aries.

In Tango Schneider appears nude in several scenes. In one, Brando puts butter into her anus and has (fake) anal sex with her. Apparently, it was not in the script, it was an idea Brando and Bertolucci got that very morning, and Maria was not informed in advance.

[Chtn] After the shooting of the ‘butter scene’ she hid herself in her appartment and cried all night like a child.

1972-03-27 her 20th birthday [Das] she receives flowers from an unknown admirer (probably Brando).

[Das] salary for Tango was £ 2500; she never got additional money.

[Ebert], [Kraft] salary was $ 5000

[BuetJ] “I regret my choice [doing Tango instead of Indian Summer]. The start of my career would have been softer, more quiet. I was not ready for Tango. People have identified me with someone who wasn’t me. The butter, the dirty talk of old pigs...

Marlon was extraordinary, kind towards the crew, generous. Bertolucci, being a communist, counted his money and let people work fifteen hours a day. Marlon said: ‘Now, let’s have a break, and sandwiches for all’, notwithstanding his being hollywood superstar. There was chemics between us, an understanding.

In the original script, my part had to be played by a boy, which changes everything. They didn’t have the courage [to cast a boy]. Marlon always said to me: ‘but you, you have more character than a boy!’ ” [laughs]

“After the film by Bertolucci, I got huge offers of money to do similar films, parts of sex-symbol… I broke with that very very soon. And I also got problems, because they said: ‘She doesn’t want to undress anymore, she doesn’t want to do love scenes’.”

[IMDb MS] Esther Anderson (born 1946) went out with Marlon Brando and was with him when he starred in Last Tango in Paris (1972). She became great friends with Schneider, who featured in the controversial sex scene with Brando at the tender age of 19. “I was with Maria when she saw the film for the first time ... she was absolutely shocked. She had no idea what they were going to do with her. She ran from the cinema screaming and I had to run after her into the street and comfort her. That film ruined her life”.

She had a nervous breakdown after Tango, but that may have been in 1976 after Caligula or even 1977 after Bunuel.

1972-09 Last Tango in Paris is released at the festival of Venice, then 1972-10-14 festival New York, -12-15 in France and Italy.

1972-fall: is cast by Lee Jaffe to shoot in Chile, but the CIA made the project impossible [LJ]