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2017, may – Mixte (France) – MAGIC MONICA BELLUCCI


The Italian-born, Paris-based actress returns with a hit TV series in America, a role in David Lynch’s Twin Peaks re-launch, and as the MC for this year’s Cannes Film Festival. “This year, Claudia Cardinale is on the poster, a nice Italian symbol. Through cinema, voices from all over the world can be heard, even when their political situation is difficult.”
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 Manteau en tulle de soie GUCCI. Photo : Francesco Carrozzini. Réalisation : Alexis Roche. Coiffure : John Nollet. Maquillage : Letizia Carnevale. Assistant photographe : Ed Singleton. Assistante styliste : Monique Nguyen. Digital Tech : Michele Cipriani

Monica Bellucci is considered by many as the epitome of the modern movie icon: as alluring as her forbears Claudia Cardinale and Sophia Loren, and no less curious. Her wide-ranging body of work includes auteur cinema (L’Appartement:1996 by Gilles  Mimouni, Gaspar Noé’s Irréversible: 2002), big budget (The Matrix Reloaded: 2013, Spectre: 2015); and she currently stars in the third season of the Amazon hit TV series, Mozart in the Jungle, alongside Gael García Bernal, created by Roman Coppola; and alongside Emir Kusturica in his newest film, On the Milky Road. Over cappuccino in Manhattan’s legendary hotel, The Pierre, Monica Bellucci wears a black wraparound dress and very high-heeled boots. At 52, she continues to radiate sensuality and mystery. As an actress, she appears to give her all, while still retaining much of herself private. She is tight-lipped about her role in the relaunch of Twin Peaks, yet affectionate about Francesco Carrozzini, the photographer for this Mixte shoot and the son of the late Franca Sozzani, the editor of Italian Vogue, a personal friend whom she greatly admired. That evening, she is to attend the Met Gala with Valentino, leaving the next day for Los Angeles before heading back to Europe. She is animated, sharp, and funny.


“Not all models can be actresses, but all actresses can be models. Actresses know how to move: a photographic image is still. Cinema is the opposite. Everything is movement. These are two completely different ways to exist in front of the camera. It is all about femininity. Richard Burton used to say – of course, he was married to one of the most incredible actresses in the world – but, he used to say: ‘An actress is a little bit more than a woman, an actor is a little bit less than a man.’”


“One of my girls, Deva, the oldest, she’s so tall, and so pretty. She is curious about this world of fashion and business and acting and singing. Sometimes I say: ‘Just calm down, take your time.’ At the same time, I did my first photo shoot when I was 13. It happened by chance. A photographer, friend of friends, asked my mother if he could take pictures of me. I was so lucky, because I when I started after that it was with Bruce Weber, Steven Meisel, and Helmut Newton, and then through that, I got my first role. Roman Coppola saw a picture of me, and it gave me a chance to meet Francis. I had a little tiny moment in Dracula (1992), and I realized that I wanted to do cinema.”


“It is funny, because when I saw Roman in New York, not long time ago, for Mozart in the Jungle – in which I play this beautiful role, Alessandra, the opera singer – he said, ‘You need to thank me!’ After all those years, I’m so lucky, to work with talented people, with the English director, Sam Mendes; and with American and Italian directors. Next, I’m going back to Europe to do the promotion for Emir Kusturica’s film, On the Milky Road. I speak Serbian in it, because I play a Serbian woman. I have the chance to get in touch with different cultures and speak different languages.”


“Cannes is one of the most important festivals in the world. Big productions, but also independent movies, which have the possibility to be known all over the world. This year we have 29 countries represented; there are 12 female directors, in all the competitions. Without Cannes, my career would be very different. I remember the first time was for my first American movie, Under Suspicion (2000) with Morgan Freeman and Gene Hackman: two incredible actors. Then I did Irréversible, a scandalous movie. This year, Claudia Cardinale is on the poster, a nice Italian symbol. Through cinema, voices from all over the world can be heard, even when their political situation is difficult.”


“When I did Spectre, everybody was saying, ‘Here’s a woman who is not young anymore’, like it was revolutionary. But I think there is a new way to look women today, and not just in Europe – because of course there we have incredible actresses like Catherine Deneuve, Isabelle Huppert, Nathalie Baye, Helen Mirren, Judi Dench – but even in America it is changing a lot. I think that what is changing is that women have much more respect for themselves as a person. If you don’t respect yourself first of all, nobody can look at you with respect. I don’t think that to be equal to men you have to become like men. A woman’s rhythm is different. It took so long to make everybody understand that women can create twice over.”


“I love to let everybody work. For example [on photoshoots], when you are you, you don’t choose the right pictures. The way you look at yourself is not interesting. The people who do my hair, they do it much better than me. You have to let other people work with you. If you control everything, sometimes you lose so much. You are not an island. You have to let all the talents express themselves. Be confident. People come up with ideas – it’s incredible!”

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