Eva Gaëlle Green: A Life in Film and Beyond
Eva Gaëlle Green, born on July 6, 1980, in Paris, France, is a renowned French actress and model of Jewish descent. She has garnered fame for her roles in Hollywood productions such as "Kingdom of Heaven" (2005), "Casino Royale" (2006), which earned her a BAFTA Award, and "300: Rise of an Empire" (2014).
Green was born in Paris to Marlene Jobert (née Maurer), a French actress of Algerian-Jewish heritage, with roots in the Pied-Noir community, and Walter Green, a dentist of Swedish and French descent. Eva has often described herself as a "non-practicing Jewish" person who never attended a synagogue as a child. She once stated, "I feel like a citizen of the world.
There are no boundaries for cinema and life." She has a non-identical twin sister, Joy (Johanne). Green's upbringing was primarily in the seventeenth arrondissement of Paris. She has characterized her family as "bourgeois" and noted that her sister is quite different from her.
Green was educated in France and studied at the American University of Paris, an English-speaking institution. She also spent part of her time studying in England and Ireland. Green was a quiet student, and her interest in Egyptology began at the age of seven when she visited the Louvre Museum. At the age of 14, after watching Isabelle Adjani in "The Story of Adele H.," she decided to pursue acting.
Initially, her mother had reservations about Eva's acting career, fearing it might be too overwhelming for her sensitive daughter. However, she eventually supported Green's aspirations. At the age of 17, Eva enrolled in a three-year drama program at the St. Paul Drama School in Paris. She later stated that in school productions, she always chose the "truly evil" roles as a way to cope with her daily emotions.
After completing her drama studies, Green began her acting career in Parisian theater, and she was even nominated for a Molière Award for her performance in the play "Jalousie en Trois Fax" in 2001. In 2002, she also appeared in the play "Turcaret."
Her breakthrough came when director Bernardo Bertolucci discovered her and cast her in his film "The Dreamers," released in 2003. Bertolucci described her as "so beautiful that it's unfair." Despite initial opposition from her parents, Green accepted Bertolucci's offer. In the film, she appeared in numerous nude scenes, and she later confessed that she felt comfortable on set but was embarrassed when her parents saw the movie.
Her performance received positive reviews, with some comparing her to American actress Liv Tyler. Green expressed satisfaction with the complexity of her character, which was restored in the director's cut of the film.
In 2004, she appeared in "Arsène Lupin," playing the love interest of Lupin. Although she enjoyed the role, she usually prefers more complex characters.
Her appearance in "The Dreamers" caught the attention of director Ridley Scott, who cast her as Sibylla, Queen of Jerusalem, in the Hollywood epic "Kingdom of Heaven," released in 2005. While the role brought international recognition, her screen time was significantly reduced in the final cut of the film.
Stephanie Zacharek of Salon praised her performance, saying, "She didn't really know what to do with her character's awkward dialogues, but she's so regal that you hardly notice." Mark Kermode of the BBC called her character "underwritten." Green was pleased when the complexity of her character was restored in the director's cut.
In 2005, Green was one of the top contenders for roles in the films "The Garden of Eden" (ultimately played by Rachel Weisz) and "The Black Dahlia."
In 2006, she was cast at the last minute as Vesper Lynd in the James Bond film "Casino Royale." Her performance in the film received positive reviews, and she was hailed as one of the best Bond girls.
Entertainment Weekly named her one of the four best Bond girls, and IGN ranked her as the best femme fatale. Her role in the film earned her a BAFTA Award and an Empire Award. Both awards were chosen by the British public.
In 2007, Green was one of the leading contenders for the lead role in "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street." She was ultimately replaced by Helena Bonham Carter. That same year, she played the witch Serafina Pekkala in a film adaptation of Philip Pullman's novel "The Golden Compass." Daniel Craig, who had previously appeared with her in "Casino Royale," also starred in the film, but the two did not share scenes.
In 2009, Green appeared in the film "Cracks" as Miss G, a mysterious teacher who falls in love with one of her students. She also starred in "Franklyn," portraying Emilia, a schizophrenic woman with a dissociative identity disorder.
In addition, she was supposed to play the lead role in Lars von Trier's controversial film "Antichrist" in 2009. However, according to von Trier, Green's agents refused to let her participate in the film, and Charlotte Gainsbourg was cast instead.
In 2010, Green starred in the film "Womb" as a woman who clones her dead lover. The film is a collaboration between director Benedek Fliegauf and actor Matt Smith. In 2011, Green joined the cast of the television series "Camelot" in its first season, playing the sorceress Morgan le Fay. She described it as "such a symbolic story, and you only have ten episodes to explore the character's essence... She has guts."
In 2012, she played Angelique Bouchard in Tim Burton's film "Dark Shadows," alongside Johnny Depp and others. In 2013, she starred in "300: Rise of an Empire," directed by Israeli director Noam Murro, a sequel to the box office hit "300," where she portrayed Artemisia, a ruthless and bloodthirsty commander of the Persian forces.
Starting in 2014, she played the lead role in the Showtime television horror series "Penny Dreadful" as Vanessa Ives, a woman with supernatural connections. Her performance in this role earned her a Golden Globe Award nomination. In the summer of 2014, she appeared in the sequel film "Sin City: A Dame to Kill For" as Ava alongside Mickey Rourke, Jessica Alba, and others. In 2016, she starred in another Tim Burton film, "Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children."
In 2017, she appeared in the French film "Based on a True Story," directed by Roman Polanski, who also co-wrote the screenplay with Olivier Assayas. In 2019, she starred in the drama film "Proxima."
In 2020, she played a central role in the British-New Zealand historical miniseries "The Luminaries."
In 2021, Green portrayed Milady in "The Three Musketeers: D'Artagnan" and its sequel "The Three Musketeers: Rochefort," alongside Vincent Cassel.
Eva Green is known for her unique sense of style, often opting for dark, Gothic-inspired fashion. She has been associated with several high-end fashion brands and has graced the covers of numerous fashion magazines. Despite her fame, she's known for her privacy and avoidance of social media.
Green is fluent in French and English and has acted in both languages throughout her career. She has expressed an interest in continuing to explore diverse roles and working in different film industries.
In addition to her acting career, Green has worked as a model, representing brands such as Armani, Dior, and Breil. She was also a spokesmodel for the fragrance Midnight Poison by Dior.
Eva Green's career has been marked by her ability to portray complex and enigmatic characters, often with a dark or mysterious edge. Her distinctive screen presence and talent have made her a respected figure in the world of cinema, and she continues to captivate audiences with her performances on both the big screen and television.
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