Paul LeBlanc, Hairstylist for ‘Amadeus’ and Princess Leia, Dies at 73

LeBlanc’s credits include “Return of the Jedi,” “No Country for Old Men” and “Black Swan”

Paul LeBlanc
Photo credit: Kevin Winter

Paul LeBlanc, Oscar-winning hairstylist for stars like Carrie Fisher, Sharon Stone and Javier Bardem, died Wednesday at the age of 73, his family announced.

Born in New Brunswick, LeBlanc’s biggest claim to fame was his hairstyling on the 1984 Best Picture Oscar winner “Amadeus.” LeBlanc won the Best Makeup Oscar for that film alongside makeup artist Dick Smith and later received the lifetime achievement award from the Makeup Artists and Hair Stylists Guild in 2003.

Prior to “Amadeus,” LeBlanc worked on the hair of one of the most iconic characters in film history: Princess Leia. The 1983 “Star Wars” film “Return of the Jedi” was one of LeBlanc’s first major jobs in cinematic hairstyling, fashioning the braids that Leia wore as Jabba the Hutt’s slave and as a guest of the Ewoks on Endor.

In the 1990s, LeBlanc became the hairstylist for Sharon Stone on multiple films, including for her performance as Catherine Tramell in “Basic Instinct” and as Ace Rothstein’s doomed wife Ginger in “Casino.” In the 2000s, he worked with filmmakers like Darren Aronofsky (“Requiem For A Dream,” “Black Swan”) and the Coen Brothers (“O Brother, Where Art Thou?”, “The Ladykillers”).

But perhaps his most famous hairstyle of the 2000s was the one he gave Javier Bardem in the Best Picture winner “No Country For Old Men,” where Bardem played the amoral killer Anton Chigurh. In a 2008 Guardian interview, LeBlanc said that Chigurh’s bowl cut was inspired by the medieval Crusades, “when knights and Muslims were murdering each other, and this was a typical haircut. It was a dangerous time and we wanted to make Javier timeless and dangerous at first sight.”

LeBlanc is survived by his wife, Louise, and his brothers Georges, Marc and Allison.