Sylvie Testud: "Pierre Cosso in "La Boum" gave me my first emotions"

Sylvie Testud: “Pierre Cosso in “La Boum” gave me my first emotions”

The actress of Stupeur et Tremblements, member of the jury of the 36th edition of the romantic film festival, does not hide from loving great love stories on the big screen. Meeting in Cabourg.

Paris Match: What do you like so much about romantic films?
Sylvie Testud. What is romance after all? Love in situations that we live but that we also continue to dream. Some will say that I’m a bit of a shopaholic, but I don’t think so: when you let your emotions run through you and you love dreams, then you love romance. I love “Out of Africa” ​​for example, or “On the road to Madison”. Sometimes the great love movies aren’t what you think they are. Take “Kramer vs. Kramer” for example: the story of a divorce but at the same time one of the most beautiful love films. I think cinema will always be about love. It’s what he does best.

As a viewer, have you ever fallen in love with a fictional character?
Sure. Seeing Joaquin Phoenix in ‘Two Lovers,’ I wish I had entered the screen [rires]. Or even Gérard Depardieu in “The Woman Next Door”. And when I was 12, Pierre Cosso in “La Boum” gave me my first emotions.

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And as an actress, have you ever fallen in love on set? Of the actor or character in front of you?
We are still in love at the time of the sequence, otherwise we do not invest enough. But it’s an immediate feeling, which vanishes as soon as the lights go out, the door closes. As François Truffaut said, cinema is, in a way, life accelerated. We love each other or we hate each other at high speed.

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Is today the 7th art dares to tell all the love stories or are there still taboos?
Here, in Cabourg, we have really seen films where couples invent new forms of life. Things that I personally had never seen before.

If Polanski offers me a role, I hope I have the strength to refuse.

You have portrayed many powerful women on screen. Do you feel like a role model for women today?
Strong women, yes sometimes, especially when I did “Sagan” (by Diane Kurys, 2008). She was in the vein of Agnès B. or Sonia Rykiel: women who lived freely without ever being an activist. They led their lives as they saw fit, and left others the right to think what they wanted of them. True freedom, that’s it: a crazy force, without deployment of force. To need to militate, to parade, is already a loss of freedoms. But many women are forced to do this unfortunately. Besides, I get mad when I see that women still have to fight for such and such a thing. Especially since those who are militant are often badly perceived: there is a rather unbearable double penalty.

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You, you are not an activist?
Luckily, I never needed to be. So sometimes I get that label ’cause I’m an actress and I smoke fags [rires]. But I haven’t been to a protest since I was 14.

What do you think of Adèle Haenel’s decision to no longer shoot for established directors and to favor only novice artists or the director Céline Sciamma with whom she has a close artistic relationship?
I completely understand her: she overcame painful ordeals that one can hardly imagine. She has all my respect. Society needs women like her. I thank her for the future generation, of which my daughter is a part.

Adèle Haenel has also risen against Roman Polanski. You, today, could you turn for him?
Oh, I never asked myself the question. Originally, I had respect for his work as a director, but now, how can I put it, this whole story is starting to matter a lot… So if he ever offered me a role, I hope I would have the strength refuse.

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