Jacques Tati was born on October 9, 1907 in Yvelines, France. His birth name is Jacques Tatischeff a rich name from a Russian heritage. Jacques had no intent of following his father into the family business of restoration and framing. He pursued a career in engineering and arts at Lycee de Saint Germain-en-laye. When he graduated he desired to be involved in sports. He contemplated playing as a professional rugby player. Jacques had the talent for pantomime and entertained his teachers and classmates. At the age of 23, Jacques decided to search a career in show business.
He toured Parisian music halls, circuses and theatres with his acrobatics, drunk waiter and comic tennis routines. He changed his name to Tati and he was acknowledge as a clown of great talent. He made his screen debut in Oscar, Champion de tennis in 1932 and Soigne ton gauche in 1936. After WWII Jacques was cast in Sylvie et le fantome in 1946.
Mr. Hulot's Holiday in 1953 became a visual comedy and a serious business for Tati. In Mon Oncle in 1958 and Playtime in 1967 Hulot moves through the film in a simple and old-fashioned way. Playtime took six years to make and required the creation of massive glass and concrete high rise sets. This raised the picture's total budget to $3 million and bankrupted Tati. Traffic in 1971 did not recoup his losses and creditors confiscated Tati's films. He steadily employed non-professional actors and refused offers from Hollywood for a group of television comedies.
Tati had one spouse, Micheline Winter and they married in 1944 and remained married until November 4, 1982 or his death. They had two children.