Brigitte Lahaie, actress, author, broadcaster and now a star on French radio station RMC, with her daily show on life, love and sexuality, "Lahaie, líamour et vous", she is still better known as perhaps the quintessential X-rated star icon of France and indeed Europe during the revolutionary 70ís. But she is much more than that, after successfully moving from adult cinema to having successful roles in Jean Rollinís "Fascination", Jess Francoís "Faceless", Philip Kaufmanís "Henry and June" and recently Fabrice Du Welzís "Calvaire". In addition she has written a successful autobiography "Moi, La Scandaleuse" amongst many other publications and has been a well known face on French television, particularly on Canal Plus, RTL and XXL.
Speaking for the entire staff here at Cinema Nocturna, Iíd like to thank Brigitte for taking the time to talk to us about her wide and varied career, and on a personal level itís truly an honour.
Nick Frame: What initially attracted you to the world of acting and how did you end up starring in your first adult film?
Brigitte Lahaie: I started acting in the world of cinema X without any particular goals; I just wanted to see what would happen. However, I subsequently met Jean Rollin while he was directing under a pseudonym, while making an X movie. This meeting proved decisive for me and my career as an actress, as he would ultimately offer me my first straight acting role. That was in of course "The Grapes of Death" (Les Raisins de la Mort) my first horror film. After that he gave me many more roles in his movies.
NF: Was the experience in the adult film world generally positive or did you have any problems?
BL: I totally loved my time while making X movies and I donít have a single regret.
NF: You are also well known for having worked with the aforementioned Jean Rollin and Jess Franco, could you tell us a little of what it was like working with them both and how different they were in their approach to filmmaking?
BL: Comparisons are often made between these directors; as in the manner in which they both construct their scenes within a movie. However, they are in fact very different, both in the way they direct and the relationships they had with the cast and crew. Rollin was a very lunar artist, while Franco was more pragmatic.
NF: Looking back at your career what film are you most proud of and why?
BL: I am not overly proud of any one film or my career as an actress. However I have a saying; Iíve had small roles in big movies and big roles in small movies.
NF: Are you surprised by how very popular you and your films still are today?
BL: For a long time, Iíve been very surprised with my popularity. Undoubtedly, I must symbolise something to many people but whatever "it" is, it escapes me. However I feel that this is also the case with many other artists.
NF: After being a part of Fabrice du Welzís "Calvaire", would you like to do some more film work in the future given the opportunity?
BL: No, I am not overly attracted to the cinema world anymore. It has too many constraints for someone like me, who likes to be free and uninhibited. However, in regards to "Calvaire", I enjoyed that experience and have no regrets at all.
NF: Finally, are you enjoying your experience with RMC and what are your plans for the future?
BL: I take a great deal of pleasure being on the radio because you truly get to interact with people and get intimate with them. I also have many other projects on the go, specifically in the field of literature. In short, I work a lot, I love what I do, and I am fortunate to be able to pick and choose my projects.
NF: Thank you once again for talking to us, the pleasure really has been all mine and I wish you every success in the future.
Interview Conducted by Cinema Nocturna Contributing Staff Writer Nick Frame, May 2006.
Brigitteís Blog at RMC
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