Donald Sutherland Wife, Discover Everything You Need To Know Here!

Francine Racette is a Canadian actress known for her extensive work in French-language films. Born in Quebec, she grew up in Canada, speaking French as her first language. After graduating from the National Theatre School …

Francine Racette is a Canadian actress known for her extensive work in French-language films. Born in Quebec, she grew up in Canada, speaking French as her first language. After graduating from the National Theatre School of Canada in 1966, Racette went on to star in several notable films, including “Au revoir les enfants,” “Lumière,” and “The Disappearance.” Her performance in “Lumière” earned her a César Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress in 1977.

How Did Donald Sutherland and Francine Racette Meet?

Donald Sutherland and Francine Racette met in 1972 while working on the Western film “Alien Thunder.” At the time, Sutherland had just ended his relationship with actress Jane Fonda. Their connection on set led to a lasting relationship, and they married later that year. Sutherland often spoke highly of Racette, describing her as an extraordinary human and his source of constant joy and laughter.

How Did Their Marriage and Family Life Evolve?

Sutherland and Racette enjoyed a strong and enduring marriage of over 50 years until his death on June 20, 2024. They welcomed three children together: Roeg, born on February 5, 1974; Rossif, born on September 25, 1978; and Angus, born on September 3, 1982. Sutherland also had two children from his previous marriage to Shirley Douglas: twins Kiefer and Rachel, born in 1966. The couple named each of their children after directors Sutherland admired, reflecting his deep love for filmmakers.

How Did Racette Influence Sutherland’s Career?

Racette played a significant role in Sutherland’s career, often advising him on his projects. One notable instance was when she suggested he take the lead role in “Enigma Variations” and acquire the English translation rights. Sutherland heeded her advice, acknowledging the success of the play. He also recounted a previous instance where he ignored Racette’s suggestion to participate in “La Cage aux Folles,” a decision he later regretted due to its immense success.

What Was the Nature of Their Relationship?

Sutherland and Racette maintained a close and supportive relationship throughout their marriage. Sutherland frequently emphasized that wherever he lived, it was with his wife, highlighting the importance of their bond. In interviews, he credited Racette as his main inspiration and guide, describing her truthfulness and humbling influence on his life and career.

How Did They Support Each Other Professionally and Personally?

Professionally, Racette was highly respected, having worked with intellectuals like Jean-Paul Sartre and Frédéric Rossif. Sutherland admired her career and often highlighted her achievements. Personally, they supported each other through various phases of life. Racette stood by Sutherland’s side during significant moments, including when he received an honorary Academy Award in 2018. He shared a memorable anecdote of learning about the award while eating spaghetti in Rome with Racette, who humorously remarked on their need to lose weight for the event.

What Was Francine Racette’s Role in the Family?

Racette’s role extended beyond her career to being a nurturing mother and supportive wife. Her influence was evident in the career paths of their children, with all of them working in film and television. Kiefer and Rossif followed in their father’s footsteps as actors, while Rachel became a production manager, Roeg worked for Creative Artists Agency, and Angus pursued behind-the-camera roles. Sutherland often spoke of the family’s collective love for filmmaking and the significant role Racette played in their lives.

How Did Sutherland and Racette Balance Their Professional and Personal Lives?

Balancing their professional and personal lives was a cornerstone of Sutherland and Racette’s relationship. Despite Sutherland’s demanding career, which took him around the world, his priority remained his wife and family. This balance was evident in their frequent relocations between Paris, New York, and Miami, depending on his work commitments. Sutherland’s statement, “I live with my wife,” encapsulated their deep connection and mutual support, transcending geographical locations.

What Was Their Life Like in Their Later Years?

In their later years, Sutherland and Racette continued to share a life filled with love, laughter, and mutual respect. They attended various industry events together, supporting each other’s professional endeavors. Sutherland’s reflections on his relationship with Racette often centered around their shared humor and enduring companionship, qualities he cherished deeply.


Donald Sutherland and Francine Racette’s relationship was marked by deep love, mutual respect, and professional collaboration. Their marriage of over 50 years was a testament to their strong bond and unwavering support for each other. Racette’s influence on Sutherland’s career and their collective dedication to their family’s involvement in the film industry highlights the remarkable journey they shared. As Sutherland once beautifully put it, no matter where he lived, his home was always with Racette, underscoring the profound connection that defined their life together.

Leave a Comment