Catherine Deneuve celebrated at the Venice Film Festival as the most Italian of French actresses

The Golden Lion for his entire career was awarded to him on August 31, the day of the opening of the prestigious festival of the city of the Doges. Back to his dolce vita at the cinema.

“Yes,I am Catherine Deneuve“. The phrase has become a gimmick in Italy. It’s a short line from the actress, a dazzling smile and a perfect blow-dry in front of a luxury hotel, at the end of a 1982 advertising spot for a Lancia brand car. “It has become a common expression in Italy, which we throw to punctuate a sentence, when we want to claim our chic side, by joke or self-mockery.“, explains the Franco-Italian Alessandra Serra, who drew a musical and humorous show from it.

Rewarded on Wednesday August 31 with a Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival, Catherine Deneuve has always maintained a privileged relationship with Italy. She lived a great love with Marcello Mastroianni. Their daughter is named Chiara. She played for Monicelli, Risi, Ferreri, Bolognini… For many Italians, she is “the Deneuve“.

She still goes there frequently, has shot a dozen films there since the 1960s and will have formed one of the most famous cinema couples with the seductive Marcello, the man who will have embodied so well Thesweet life Roman under the masterful baton of his friend Federico Fellini.

Their first meeting took place in the fall of 1970 during a dinner at Roman Polanski’s in London. Mastroianni shoots the last scenes of a film there. He is 46 years old, she is 27. The actor with many female conquests has just been left by Faye Dunaway. Deneuve is no longer with François Truffaut. The magic doesn’t work right away. “His role required him to have his head shaved and I must admit that I did not recognize him right away.“confided the actress.

They get closer shortly after, on the set of Çit only happens to others, by Nadine Trintignant. “The film finished, Marcello remained in my life“. For four years, they formed one of the most glamorous couples in cinema. They live in Paris. Chiara will be born in 1972, and will also become an actress. But Mastroianni is still married in Italy and has no intention of divorcing. Deneuve ended their relationship in 1974.”We remained the best friends in the world“confided Mastroianni.

Deneuve and the Mostra, a special story

She is a regular in Venice, where she has presented several films in competition. latest, The truth by the Japanese Hirokazu Kore-eda, at the opening of the 2019 festival. She also chaired the jury of the 63e Mostra, in 2006, and received the Volpi Cup for best female interpretation in 1998 for Place Vendôme by Nicole Garcia. She was also rewarded in Rome with a David di Donatello, – Italian equivalent of Caesar -, for the best foreign actress for The Last Metro by Truffault.

With Italy, Catherine Deneuve has a special history. During the filming – already in Venice – oflost souls in 1977 by Dino Risi (with a Vittorio Gassman who would have been a hundred years old this Thursday, September 1), she confessed: “I really like Italian films. Because we breathe, because we live. I find the scenarios in general more elaborate, richer (…). Italians have a fantastic sense of derision.”

She made her first Italian film at the age of 20, With love and with rage. In this comedy, she gives the reply to Sami Frey. We find it in Lisa (1972) by Marco Ferreri, behind closed doors in love with Mastroianni. The couple shoot again for Ferreri in Don’t touch the white woman! (1974), parody of the Battle of the Little Bighorn. She will still be showing The Grande Bourgeoise (1974) by Mauro Bolognini, based on a news item from the beginning of the 20th centuryecentury, of The cabin of lovers (1977) by Sergio Citti and comedy Provided it’s a girl (1986) by Mario Monicelli.

She is the best-known French actress in Italy, where she makes frequent trips. Regularly invited on television sets, she expresses herself in fluent Italian. When her daughter Chiara was a child, she spoke to her in Italian.so that she doesn’t forget her father’s language“. And in the movie The family heroshe will cover the song in Italian Ho capito che ti amo by Luigi Tenco.
The only downside to this beautiful love story with Italy: it was whistled in 2009 at a cultural festival in Tuscany, the public was, it seems, irritated by a text widely said… in French.

Catherine Deneuve celebrated at the Venice Film Festival as the most Italian of French actresses