Monday, May 23, 2011

Catherine Deneuve

Catherine Deneuve (French pronunciation: [katʁin dəˈnœv], born 22 October 1943) is a French actress. She gained recognition for her portrayal of aloof and mysterious beauties in films such as Repulsion (1965) and Belle de jour (1967). Deneuve was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress in 1993 for her performance in Indochine; she also won César Awards for that film and The Last Metro (1980). Considered one of France's most successful actresses she has also appeared in seven English-language films, most notably the 1983 cult classic The Hunger. In 2008, she appeared in her 100th film, Un conte de Noël.

Early life

Deneuve was born Catherine Fabienne Dorléac in occupied Paris, the third of four daughters, to French stage and screen actor Maurice Dorléac and actress Renée Deneuve. Deneuve attended Catholic schools. Her three sisters are actress Françoise Dorléac (who died in a car crash on 26 June 1967), Sylvie Dorléac and Danielle Dorléac.

Film career

Deneuve began acting as a teenager using her mother's surname as her elder sister, Françoise Dorléac, was using their father's name. She made her film debut with a small role in Les Collégiennes (1957) and subsequently appeared in films directed by Roger Vadim, such as Vice and Virtue (1963). The film that brought her stardom was Jacques Demy's 1964 musical Les Parapluies de Cherbourg. She made two more films with Demy , most notably another musical, Les Demoiselles de Rochefort (1967), with Dorléac – who was killed in a car accident the following year – as her twin sister. Further prominent films from this early time in her career included Roman Polanski's Repulsion (1965), Jean-Paul Rappeneau's La Vie de château (1966), which employed her 'underused comic skills', and Luis Buñuel's Belle de Jour (1967), – as the ' haut-bourgeois housewife who achieves sexual satisfaction working in a Parisian brothel.' In the Polanski film, Deneuve first portrayed the character archetype for which she would be nicknamed the "ice maiden", playing a beautiful Belgian girl, an emotionally distant and mysterious woman 'going homicidally insane in Kensington.' Her work for Buñuel would be her most famous, and her screen persona as "a cold, remote erotic object which dreams are made on" reached a peak, according to the critic Philip French, in her second Buñuel film Tristana, (1970). Deneuve remained active in European films throughout the 1960s and 70s, but limited her appearances in American movies of the period to The April Fools (1969) and Hustle (1975). She co-starred with a young Jodie Foster in Casotto (1977).
In the 1980s, Deneuve's most notable films were François Truffaut's Le Dernier métro (1980), which garnered her the César Award for Best Actress, and Tony Scott's cult classic The Hunger (1983), her third American film in which she starred as a bisexual vampire, co-starring with David Bowie and Susan Sarandon. Deneuve's sex scene with Sarandon in The Hunger brought her a significant lesbian following.
Deneuve won a second Cesar Award and received an Academy Award nomination for her performance in the period piece Indochine (1992). Her other significant movies were André Téchiné's Ma saison préférée (1993) and Les Voleurs (1995). In 1994, she was Vice President on the jury of the Cannes Film Festival.In 1996, Deneuve joined the documentary L'Univers de Jacques Demy, to show tribute to the director who made the film that brought her to fame. In 1997, she was the protagonist of the video clip of the song N'Oubliez Jamais singing by Joe Cocker. The next year, she won acclaim and the Volpi Cup at the Venice Film Festival for her performance in Place Vendôme. In 1999 Deneuve appeared in five films, including: Est-Ouest, Le temps retrouvé, and Pola X. Her part in Lars von Trier's musical drama Dancer in the Dark (2000) alongside Icelandic singer Björk was subject to considerable critical scrutiny. The film was selected for the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival.
Deneuve's fourth and most recent American film was The Musketeer (2001). She shared the Silver Bear Award for Best Ensemble Cast at the Berlin International Film Festival for her performance in 8 Women (2002). In 2005, Deneuve published her diary A l'ombre de moi-meme ("In My Own Shadow", published in English as Close Up and Personal: The Private Diaries of Catherine Deneuve); in it she writes about her experiences shooting the films Indochine and Dancer in the Dark; and working with leading men such as Burt Reynolds, Jack Lemmon, Vincent Perez, William Hurt, and Marcello Mastroianni. In 2006, she headed the jury at the Venice Film Festival. She made another brief return to Hollywood with a guest-starring role on the FX TV series Nip/Tuck during its fourth season in November 2006. She also lent her voice to the Oscar-nominated animated feature Persepolis (2007). In 2008, she appeared in her 100th film, Un conte de Noël, which co-starred her daughter Chiara Mastroianni. That same year she was honored at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival for her work.
Deneuve continues to work steadily making at least two or three films per year.

Career outside of film


One of the world's great beauties, her image was used to represent Marianne, the national symbol of France, from 1985 to 1989. She was the face of Chanel No. 5 in the late 1970s and she caused sales of the perfume to soar in the United States – so much so that the American press, captivated by her charm, nominated her as the world's most elegant woman.
In 1983, American Home Products retained her to represent their cosmetics line. The company hired world-renowned photographer Richard Avedon and Catherine Deneuve to promote its line of Youth Garde cosmetics in which she famously proclaimed "Look closely. Next year I will be 40."
She is considered the muse of designer Yves Saint Laurent; he dressed her in the films Belle de Jour, La Chamade, La sirène du Mississipi, Liza, and The Hunger. In 1992, she became a model for his skincare line.
In 2001, she was chosen as the new face of L'Oréal Paris. In 2006, Deneuve became the third inspiration for the M•A•C Beauty Icon series. Deneuve and make-up artists collaborated on the colour collection that became available at M•A•C locations worldwide in February 2006. Deneuve began appearing in the new Louis Vuitton luggage advertisements in 2007.

Personal life

Deneuve speaks fluent French, Italian, English and is semi-fluent in German. Her hobbies and passions include gardening, drawing, photography, reading, music, cinema, fashion, antiques and decoration.
Deneuve was married to photographer David Bailey from 1965 to 1972. They divorced but remain friends, and she has since said "Marriage is an obsolete trap."
Deneuve has two children: son Christian Vadim, from her relationship with Roger Vadim, and daughter Chiara Mastroianni, from her relationship with Marcello Mastroianni.
Deneuve has four grandchildren: Christian's son Igor and daughter Lou, and Chiara's son Milo and daughter Anna.


  1. Classic beauty! From another classic beauty - love you, Loulou

    Thank you

    - Glenn

  2. Thank you Glenn,Love you too,Loulou!