French Cinema

Brigitte Bardot, Catherine Deneuve, Sophie Marceau, Marion Cotillard…these are all names that stand out to us as grandes dames of French Cinema. But there are others who have achieved a significant reputation in France as Queens of cinema. One name that stands out amongst others is that of Isabelle Huppert…

Isabelle Huppert is the star of the film “Copacabana” which the Focus on French Cinema Festival has chosen to be the piece that will kick off their 2011 Annual Festival. This year Opening Night will be on Friday March 18th at 7:15pm at the Theater at Purchase College. The movie will be followed by a gala catered by Les Maîtres Cuisiniers de France and the Academie Culinaire both masters of the art of French cuisine. For more information log onto

Isabelle Huppert has the look, the style, the je-ne-sais-quoi of the quintessential French woman…a little mysterious, very unique and with a style all of her own. Born in 1953, in Paris, Isabelle was first encouraged by her mother to attend the Conservatory where she won an acting prize for her work. After obtaining a bachelor’s degree in Russian language and literature, she went on to study at the Conservatoire d’Art Dramatique which led her to an illustrious theatrical career. She first appeared on screen in 1971, landing secondary roles in a number of films. At the age of 25, she received the Prix d’Interprétation at Cannes for her role in Claude Chabrol’s Violette Noziere with whom she has maintained an extremely productive collaboration and under whose direction she embodied the infamous role of Madame Bovary.

In “Copacabana”, the opening night movie of the Focus on French Cinema Festival, she shares the screen for the first time with her daughter in real life, Lolita Chammah, in a bittersweet comedy where mother daughter roles are reversed. Lolita studied theatre at the 5th arrondissent conservatory before entering the Ecole supérieure of Strasbourg’s national theatre. From there, she made her entry into film appearing in Chabrol’s “Une affaire de femmes” On stage she played the role of Agnès in Coline Serreau’s production of “L’Ecole des femmes”. In Fitoussi’s film “Copacabana”, sharing the screen with her famous mother; critics say she boldly and impressively holds her own.

In previous years the Focus on French Cinema Festival has been a haven of French art-de-vivre and a unique mode of bridging the cultural divide between French and American customs. It makes clear the startling contrast and the unmistakable similarities between the two which ultimately serves to make us realize that we may come from different parts of the world but our humanity makes us all citizens of the same world…

Victoria Baker of Greenwich is an opera singer. A winner of many prestigious competitions, she has performed and worked with distinguished artists across the world (notably at Lincoln Center). She teaches piano & voice privately in Greenwich. For questions that deserve answers, and may be in print, please call (203) 531-7499 or send email to [email protected]



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