In her childhood she had wanted to become an opera singer but gave up that dream because of her timid nature. At the age of 18 she became interested in acting and not only did she manage to overcome her shyness, in only 10 years she managed to play some of the most provocative film roles and become one of only 3 female actresses who were awarded the Palme d’Or award at the Cannes Film Festival. This week our spotlight is on one of the brightest contemporary French stars – Léa Seydoux.
Léa was born in Paris in a well-known family with connections in the film world. She spent her childhood travelling between Paris and Senegal where her actress-turned-philanthropist mother still lives. Despite the family ties she only found acting after she fell in love with her actor friend. To impress him, Léa decided to enter the world of cinema herself and she joined Les Enfants Terribles acting school.
During her studies Miss Seydoux received her first offer to play in films and in 2006 she was casted to play one of the leading roles in the film MES COPINES by Sylvie Ayme. From then on, her career began rolling up the hill. In 2007 she starred in Nicolas Klotz’s short film LA CONSOLATION, which was her first film to be shown at the Cannes Film Festival.
Her major breakthrough began when she caught everyone’s attention with her appearance in the Christophe Honoré’s film LA BELLE PERSONNE, where she played alongside the talented Louis Garrel. For this role Seydoux received her first prestigious award – Chopard Award at Cannes Film Festival in 2009 for “Best Upcoming Actress” and the César Award nomination as the “Most Promising Actress“.
This role not only brought her praise from French film experts but also gained her an international attention and in 2009 she was casted to her first Hollywood production for Quentin Tarantino’s INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS. In 2011 Léa appeared in her personal most favourite directors Woody Allen’s film MIDNIGHT IN PARIS where she was chosen to play without any casting but just by her picture.
Léa appeared in the Benoît Jacquot’s film FAREWELL, MY QUEEN in 2013 for which she was again nominated for the Best Actress Award at the Césars. But her biggest recognition came only with her next role.
In 2013 Léa swept everybody off their feet with her breath-taking performance in the Abdellatif Kechiche’s film LA VIE D’ADÈLE. Not only did this film bring a Palme d’Or prize at the Cannes Film Festival to its director, but the jury decided also to award Léa and her partner actress Adèle Exarchopoulos making them two of three female actresses ever awarded with special Palme d’Or prize.
The following year Léa received another chance to work with one of the greatest cinema masters of these days and made an appearance in the Wes Anderson’s film THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL.
In one of the interviews Léa named the film LA BELLE ET LA BÊTE by Jean Cocteau to be her most favourite film of all the time. A happy coincidence brought her on the set of the modern movie adaptation by Christophe Gans of the very same story where Léa gets to play a leading role of Belle along with Vincent Cassel who plays the Beast.
Earlier this year her newest film was again nominated at the Cannes Film Festival. This time Léa appears in the Bertrand Bonello’s SAINT LAURENT where she again meets on set with her long time acting partner Louis Garrel who plays a role of Jacques de Bascher alongside with Gaspard Ulliel who portrays Legendary French designer Yves Saint Laurent. This film will be released in France in September 24 and here at ÉCU, we are very curious to see the performance of Miss Seydoux. We secretly hope she will share her talent with the indie world as well!