I had so many different ideas with which to celebrate today that I didn't manage to get any of them done. It's a typical problem when you have more ideas than time and when indefatigable ambition meets easily exhaustable execution. So herewith... a few off the cuff LISTS celebrating actresses that work primarily outside of the English language that are every bit as good and sometimes a whole lot better than their American/English/Aussie counterparts who get the bulk of attention in the global market.
The gold standard here is always Deneuve. "Catherine Deneuve"... go ahead, sound it out. The name itself just reverberates with glamour but the razzle dazzle of her international celebrity is hardly the reason she's the gold standard. She's also got a filmography that would be the envy of any actor who cares about cinema beyond their own image and though she'll turn 70 this fall, she's still challenging herself. Frankly, if you look at some of the work she did in the past dozen years or so (Dancer in the Dark, Potiche, Pola X, Beloved, 8 Women, A Christmas Tale, etcetera) other actresses her age are slacking...
10 Foreign Film Actresses Most Likely To Get Me in the Movie Theater
- Catherine Deneuve (France)
- Gong Li (China)
- Almodóvar's Various Muses: Carmen Maura, Cecilia Roth, Penélope Cruz, Lola Dueñas, etcetera (Spain)
- Paprika Steen (Denmark)
- Isabelle Huppert (France)
- Juliette Binoche (France)
- Jeon Do-Yeon (South Korea)
- Ludivine Sagnier (France)
- Emmanuelle Devos (France)
- Sibel Kekilli (Germany)
I know people will be like "But, Marion Cotillard!" but I see her as more Hollywood than French now (though she was pretty great in Rust & Bone). Although I assume that when she's older and Hollywood dumps her she'll get great roles regularly in Paris still.
Actresses I Miss. They Seem To Have Vanished From the Cinema...
- Maggie Cheung (China)
- Victoria Abril (Spain)
- Fernanda Montenegro (Brazil)
- Emmanuelle Béart (France)
- Franka Potente (Germany)
Newish Talents To Watch and Hopefully Obsess Over
5 Actresses I Found Amazing The First Time I Saw Them but Haven't Seen Anything Else Since (!!!). Any Suggestions?
- Tang Wei (Taiwan)... Lust Caution
- Ronit Elkabetz (Israel)... Late Marriage
- Audrey Dana (France) ... Roman de Gare
- Emilie Dequenne (Belgium) ... Our Children
- Mirjana Karanovic (Serbia)... Fraulein
Rave about your favorite international stars in the comments. Who should everyone seek out and fall for? Let's spread the love.