Monday, May 23, 2011

Beauty Icon of The Week: CATHERINE DENEUVE


Catherine Deneuve , 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'sRepulsion (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 Hungerbrought 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 documentaryL'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 Jamaissinging 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-OuestLe 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 ReynoldsJack LemmonVincent PerezWilliam Hurt, and Marcello Mastroianni. In 2006, she headed the jury at the Venice Film Festival 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 MarianneChanel 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 JourLa ChamadeLa sirène du MississipiLiza, 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.


Deneuve introduced her own perfume, Deneuve, in 1986. She is also a designer of glasses, shoes, jewelry and greeting cards.

Political involvement

  • In 1972, Deneuve signed the Manifesto of the 343 (Manifeste des 343 salopes, Manifest of the 343 bitches). The manifesto was an admission by its signers to have practiced illegal abortions, and therefore, exposed themselves to judicial actions and prison sentences.It was published in Le Nouvel Observateur on 5 April 1971. That same year, feminist lawyer Gisèle Halimi founded the group, Choisir (“To Choose”), to protect the women who had signed the Manifesto of the 343.

  • In 2001, Deneuve delivered a petition organized by the French-based group, "Together Against the death penalty," to the U.S. Embassy in Paris.
  • In April 2007, Deneuve signed a petition on the internet protesting the "misogynous" treatment of socialist presidential candidate Ségolène Royal. More than 8,000 French men and women signed the petition, including French actress Jeanne Moreau.

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.

An archetype for Gallic beauty, she succeeded Brigitte Bardot as the model for Marianne, the symbol of the French Republic seen on French coins and stamps.
Son: Christian Vadim (b. 18 June 1963). Father is Roger Vadim.
Daughter: Chiara Mastroianni (b. 28 May 1972). Father is Marcello Mastroianni.
She liked Breaking the Waves (1996) by Lars von Trier so much that she wrote a personal letter to him, asking him for a role in a film of his. The result of this is her part in Dancer in the Dark (2000).
Has never performed in the theatre due to stage fright.
Was once fashion designer Yves Saint-Laurent's muse, who dressed her for the films Belle de Jour (1967), Heartbeat (1968), Mississippi Mermaid (1969), and Un Flic (1972).
She speaks fluent Italian and French, as well as semi-fluent English and German.
Marilyn Monroe is her favorite actress, and The Misfits (1961) is her favorite movie starring Marilyn..
Her role in Mississippi Mermaid (1969) was played by Angelina Jolie in Original Sin (2001), the American remake of the movie.
Sang duets with Bernadette Lafont (1975), Gérard Depardieu (1980), Malcolm McLaren (1993), Joe Cocker (1995) and Alain Souchon (1997). In 1981, she released an album with songs of Serge Gainsbourg.
Designer of glasses, shoes, jewelry, and greetings cards.
Her performance as Séverine Sérizy in Belle de Jour (1967) is ranked #59 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Performances of All Time (2006).
She had a relationship with François Truffaut in the 1970s. When the relationship failed, Truffaut had a nervous breakdown. Deneuve attended his funeral in 1984 and later appeared in 8 Women (2002) with Fanny Ardant, who was Truffaut's partner at the time of his death and the mother of his youngest daughter.

Is a grandmother. Her grandsons are Igor (b. 1988) and Milo (b. 1996), and her granddaughters are Anna (b. 2003) and Lou (b. 2010).
Was originally cast in the role of Caterine Vauban in I Heart Huckabees (2004) but dropped out at the last minute. The part went to Isabelle Huppert.
Auditioned for the role of Francesca Johnson in The Bridges of Madison County (1995); the part went to Meryl Streep.
Turned down the role of Bond girl Tracy DiVicenzo in the James Bond film On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969).
Sharon Stone wanted Deneuve to star alongside her in Basic Instinct 2 (2006), but she declined and the role went to Charlotte Rampling.
Was in talks to star in a possible big screen adaptation of Anna Karenina that was in development during the early to mid 1980s. However, she lost interest when the project was scaled down to a made-for-TV movie. English actress Jacqueline Bisset then took on the role and the result was Anna Karenina (1985) (TV).

Personal Quotes
People who know me know I'm strong, but I'm vulnerable.
I'm lucky. I'm getting older with some directors who are getting older.
I don't see any reason for marriage when there is divorce.
To work is a noble art.
A star remains pinned on a wall in the public imagination.
But being a film actor is very different from, say, a theater actor. You get involved with a character after spending a long time waiting, and this demands a lot of energy and concentration. So I am very involved with the character, but I have to leave it as soon as it's finished. And also, you always have to be at the right level when it's time to shoot, which is not always the best time for the actor. Sometimes, if you're shooting a complicated scene, you have to stay in a position and wait for the technician to do his job, and then you have to be where you're supposed to be, right on the spot. You don't rehearse all that much on films. If I think of the amount of time I spend on set compared with the time spent shooting, it's ridiculously short.

But that's what I like about film - it can be bizarre, classic, normal, romantic. Cinema is to me the most versatile thing.
Directors have to push me because I never start [high] and then need to be pushed down; I have to be pushed up. Not all the time, but often.
I find sometimes that it's more difficult to do very simple, low-key films, like I've done with André Téchiné. Sometimes, at the end of a shoot with him, I feel very down, like I'm leaving something because these are low-key but novel characters. But when you do films like Repulsion(1965) or musicals, where you have to play someone so far away from yourself, what I do is I come in the morning and get involved in the character, but I'm always very pleased to leave it at night and have my life. No, I don't live that much with the character. I find it hard enough having to spend so many hours with the character during the day. Because you don't act all the time and you spend a long time waiting, but you still have to support this character all day long.
[on her looks] I know that if I didn't look the way I looked, I would never have started in films. That, I remember, and I know I have to accept it.
I like to be directed, it's true. If I didn't like that, I'd do something else. Being an actor means being an instrument for someone else.
I'm not always the nicest person to meet, because I forget very easily that I'm an actress when I'm not working. I live very normally, I go out with my friends, we go to the movies, I queue, we go to restaurants. Then if something happens to remind me that I'm an actress then I become a little different and things become a little heavy. I like the advantages; I know it's not right but I like being famous when it's convenient for me and completely anonymous when it's not.

Interestingly, people who have come to visit me on set - which I don't like - they're very surprised and say that I'm not the person they know. I'm not available to them, I cannot go off with them, I cannot get involved in their conversations, so they get the impression that they're seeing someone else. I tell them, yes, I do love to see them after a shoot, but during the shoot, I am with the people I work with. They ask, how can I stand being on a set waiting for so long, and that it must be so boring. And I have to explain that to wait, for an actor, is not at all like someone who's waiting to see the doctor. It's not the kind of wait where you get bored. Even if I try to think about something else while I'm waiting, I am living with the film, with the scene. But I do often feel tired during the day, and I'm lucky because I can go to sleep very easily, for even 10 to 15 minutes, even if I'm in costume or under a wig, so I do.
Interviews are written by someone else - the journalist makes the decision to add or take things away and I couldn't recognize my voice, or anything of myself in that.
What I don't like is close-ups, unless the actor is in the camera with me. I have to feel his presence. If I have to feel the presence of the camera before my partner's, it's very difficult. I love to do very long and complicated scenes. I like to have this impression that we are all working together, where you can see all the technicians and everybody is really doing the same thing at the same time. With close-ups, of course you have the crew there, but most of them are just around and it doesn't involve that many people.
[on Gene Kelly] It was mostly an aura about him. For me he was Hollywood. The way I'd imagined it as a child.
[on Jean-Louis Trintignant] I adore working with him. He's so generous, he doesn't play only for himself, but for his partner. He's also concerned with everyone on a set. That's why the technicians have great respect and tenderness for him.
I find cinema still very interesting. For me, to see a film, and to see a film and to be shown a story with actors that I like or actors that I don't know, it's always a discovery. I'm a great fan of films and I still go to see films in theaters. Even when I'm working, I try to see films. It's a desire, and it's something very important in my life. It's still something that I'm looking for, you know? It's like listening to music - it's part of my life. (2008)
My relationship to character is made up of mental things that you should not put words to. To do so would be immodest. The most decisive moment of my work around a character happens as we are shooting. That moment is so tense, so exhausting that once it is over, I need fire doors between the set and me. Back in my dressing room or in the hotel, I shut myself off, because the state I am in on set is too exhausting.
When we are filming, I can concentrate very quickly, but it does tire me out. It throws me into such a state! A trance-like state. So, what I need is either a trick for a calm type of trance or a sleepwalking trick.

I am incapable of working by myself without a director, without someone to coach me. But that doesn't tally at all with my idea of what a film character should be. I have to soak in what will happen on set, that day, the location, the light... I need to know what happens before in the story. To me that is the most important thing: to relate to a character in relation to where we are in the film. Maybe it also has to do with the fact that I have never done any real character parts. Even with Tristana, which required a bit of character acting. But Buñuel and I would talk off set, we had dinner together. The same is true of André Téchiné. We meet up but we always wind up talking about something else. And even though we have ended up talking about something unrelated, something useful has still come out of it. We have a conversation about something else but at the same time we are aware of what surrounds us, why we are here-the questions are very present in our head. But it is never straightforward. No, it is never straightforward.
(about Michael Mann) I watched Miami Vice again. I hadn't really liked it the first time round. But even so, it's a whole other way of filming, it's fascinating. There is a force, an incredible energy to it. His films are very long, but there are no gratuitous shots. When he decides to film the nape of an actor's neck, there is a real tension. It's there, it's not at all . . . an effect. It's surprising. He makes you feel the weight of things.

I was supposed to make a film with Hitchcock. It was set up North too, just like the Torn Curtain. It was going to be a spy story. At the time it was still only a synopsis. I had lunch with him in Paris and he died some months later. I would have loved to work with him.
I do prefer to start without any intention at all, rather than arrive with my own idea. I am incapable of deciding what a character is. At the same time, from the moment I have accepted the part and read the script, I know that things will circle in my mind. It won't happen all the time but nor will it ever stop entirely. But I am not obsessed, I don't have any trouble getting out of character, at night. I am always happy when filming and I am always happy to leave at night - it's true that there is always a kind of a nervous fatigue. Which I know is hidden away somewhere during the shoot. There are some things that fall into place without me doing anything. I know that now.
I am shocked when people talk about me and sum me up as: blond, cold, and solemn. People will cling on to whatever reinforces their own assumptions about a person.
Hollywood was already changing when I went there in 1968. I love American directors. I would love to work for Francis Ford Coppola or Martin Scorsese. But they don't need European actresses.
Why should I go to the States to do a film I wouldn't consider in Europe, just because it's English-speaking?

Mykie's Note:
Catherine Deneuve is one of  the world most beautiful women in the world, still stunning today and making amazing films back to back. Her name alone is Iconic. As a makeup artist there is so much that I find in her beauty and films that i can use in my own work, not to copy but to help me find my own muse. The Hunger? need i say more, That film alone along with co star David Bowie, was enough to send me into a fashion frenzy, I saw that at such a young age, still in junior high school and my mom took to to the Del amo Mann Theater to see it. I sat there glued to my seat, i didn't know what to do with what I was feeling. From the opening scene, Bela Leguoi's Dead, ,undead , undead.... i was hooked. I watch the film twice a year to this day and can pull images to mind at will for inspiration for my work. She is an ageless beauty and a star that will shine with a legacy of roles and images that she will leave behind.
So as usual here is a selected film selection of my favorite films. If you have a change to see any of them, please feel free to let me know what you think. happy movie seeing. 
mykie xoxo

1964- The Umbrellas Of Cherbourg
1965- Repulsion
1967- Young Girls Of Rochefort
1967- Manon 70
1969- The April Fools
          Mississippi Mermaid
1970- Trisana
1973- A Slightly Pregnent Man
1980- The Last Metro
1983- The Hunger
1986- Scene Of The Crime
1992- Indochine
1999- Time Regained
2000- Dancer In The Dark
2002- 8 Women
2008- A Christmas Tale
2010- Potiche


  1. Thanks Myke for this remarkable focus on this wonderful women, she is one of my favorite actress, not only by her talent but also for her beauty.

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