- Title: FRANCE: Juliette Binoche back in Cannes with role of ageing actress
- Date: 23rd May 2014
- Summary: CANNES, FRANCE (MAY 23, 2014) (REUTERS) CROWD ON RED CARPET / CAST AND DIRECTOR FOR 'SILS MARIA' ON RED CARPET VARIOUS OF CAST AND DIRECTOR ON RED CARPET PHOTOGRAPHERS ACTRESSES KRISTEN STEWART AND JULIETTE BINOCHE / DIRECTOR OLIVIER ASSAYAS AND ACTRESS CHLOE GRACE MORETZ VARIOUS OF CAST AND DIRECTOR POSING FOR PHOTOGRAPHS BINOCHE SMILING STEWART, ASSAYAS AND MORETZ TOP OF ON STEPS / BINOCHE CAST AND DIRECTOR ON TOP OF STEPS
- Embargoed: 7th June 2014 13:00
- Location: France
- Country: France
- Reuters ID: LVACZA3M4MQ9R37WRM3UCNGWNX85
- Story Text: Juliette Binoche was back in Cannes on Friday (May 23) in Olivier Assayas's "Clouds of Sils Maria" where she confronts an issue every actress eventually faces - what happens when the casting call you get is for the older woman and no longer the starlet? Men, as Harrison Ford, Arnold Schwarzenneger and Sylvester Stallone proved by bringing the roadshow to promote their "The Expendables 3" over-the-hill mercenaries franchise to Cannes last weekend, can continue to play the same action heroes into their 60s or even 70s.
But a woman can't play a starlet after a certain age, nor should she want to, Binoche, who reached global stardom in such films as "The English Patient" and "Chocolat" said at a post-screening news conference.
Assayas' directing offered the lead actresses a new way to take on their roles, with no rehearsals at all.
"It's true we've found a way of working in which we do not rehearse. That's what I started to do in 'Summer Hours' but especially in 'Carlos the Jackal' and now we do not rehearse at all anymore. It's a way, I think, to associate even more the actors to the creation of the film. Because I don't want to know what they will do. I want that what they do, their first intuition, their first impression is recorded and at the heart of the film," the director said.
In the film, Binoche plays Maria Enders, an actress whose career resembles her own and who now is in her 40s.
Enders's first big success was playing an aggressive young woman who is employed by a middle-aged woman executive who runs a company. She seduces the older woman and destroys her.
Assayas's film shows Binoche's character being asked 20 years later to play the older woman, while an aggressive, media-savvy young American actress (Chloe Grace Moretz of the "Kickass" films) will take the role of the younger one.
Enders has a great deal of difficulty coping with doing the role of the older woman but as the film progresses she finally comes to term with it, and realizes she can bring to the part something no younger actress could.
During the conference, Binoche was asked many questions about playing an ageing actress.
"I know what it's all about in a way, so I didn't have to do research and spend three months somewhere. But at the same time for me, the choice for me, what was funny is to make a moody actress, not sympathetic, you know she's really angry with the world, the world is not nice to her and she has to overcome her emotions, that was fun for me to play. And for Kristen to play the assistant was hilarious. Also I learnt thing with her, you know when you come out of a car for example, you always block the car when it's a big event because you don't let the person open the door and your dress is totally opened. So the assistant has to be in front so you're able to... you know, those kind of details, she knows more than I do because she's really in the world of paparazzis and all that. We had a lot of discussions about that and it was fun to do," she said.
Actress Kristen Stewart plays Binoche's assistant. Absent rom the news conference, Stewart joined the rest of the cast alter in the day to walk Cannes' famous red carpet.
"For me, the whole thing was quite surreal, like this event is for me kind of surreal because I know everything out of the other perspective. I'm a self confident actor, I've been working for 18 years but on the other hand, actresses like Juliette Binoche, I know them from TV, from movies, just with a frame around them and suddenly I'm sitting next to her and I'm playing with her and sometimes I felt like, I don't know if you know the movie 'Roger Rabbit'. There's this toon world and the real people and sometimes I felt like I'm in the toon world, which is really weird you know," actor Lars Eidinger said.
17-year old actress Chloe Grace Moretz said that unlike the character she portrays, who finds a way to humiliate Binoche's character even while smiling at her, she had relished the prospect of working with Binoche and Assayas, whose films she has admired for years.
"Obviously to work with Olivier and not only any project but specifically a very French project with Juliette would be so special. Because I think there is something so much more innovative about French cinema than American cinema. Because it's new and it's alive and there is something that is very raw about it that we can't quite capture I think in America yet," she said.
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