Films directors always say she’s got the cold beauty of a Hitchcock Blond. We discovered she’s got a very bright personality, an incredible smile and a brilliant carrier.
I know that it’s not easy for Russian actors to get international esteem, especially living abroad. What is it that did the trick, a strike of luck or working hard at being a Russian Actress in France?
It’s definitely hard work. I’ve heard a saying that a Russian actress must be 3 times better than a French one in order to get esteem. Every time I get a role I am so proud of myself. As soon as I got to France I immediately started speaking, writing and even crying in French, despite all the film directors sometimes changing my “biography “ in a film. Nevertheless, I am becoming more and more ‘local”!
As I am constantly travelling from Italy to Russia and back I would like to ask you if you ever feel yourself an alien in both countries? Have you found a perfect balance between your French and Russian side of your life?
I know what you mean… I have definitely had this feeling for years. When I met one of the most authentic Russian directors, Vera Storojeva, and told her my story she decided to make a film about it. So that’s how our “9 days and 1 morning” came to life. This film won the best film at the Toronto festival, and was shown in the whole world. In Germany the audience laughed, in Italy they cried, in Finland people kept silence and then burst out in applause. The issues of one’s native land, of immigration and of the search for self-identity seem to be universal values.
You told me that compared to Italy French people seem to be colder. How else do the French differ from others? How many roles do you get in Paris?
I highly recommend you to see the film ‘9 days and 1 morning” – you will get a better answer to this question!
I see you are really promoting this movie, LOL –
In fact, the French are not “colder”, they are just different from us Russians. And very similar at the same time. Such a paradox! They are very conditioned by their societal rules, the so called “etiquette” rules, the rules of behavior and of communication. They prefer, for example, to be introduced to another person. In Russia everything is much easier.
You started as a model, then became an actress. What’s your next step?
I want to be a Mother. My time has come! I would like to have a family, a real one, just become a simple happy woman in love!
If I got it right, your collaboration with Martin Scorsese and Mike Jagger is a very important move in your professional life. Tell us a little bit more about this project.
This is not just a step ahead, this a real jump ahead!. It’s my first real job in the US and immediately with this genius film director. It’s a real dream for a girl from this small little mining town . Martin Scorsese is an incredibly talented, amazing person, his crew is very professional. I am proud to be part of this team now and I am professionally ready. Just for the record, in France, there was only Jean Dujardin who had worked with Scorsese and that happened after he won his Oscar! It was literary a shock for everybody, me included. I hope the fact that I am Russian will allow me to keep my head on my shoulders when I get my first Oscar (winks).
Is it difficult to be an actress and have a private life? The life of an actress is always interesting.
It was very hard in the beginning. I once was caught by paparazzi while on vacation with my boyfriend on Marquise island. It was then published in a famous gossip magazine. My booker calls me and says: Anna, this pink dress does not suit you. The pink dress from the cover of the magazine. I was shocked. Marquise is right next to Australia. Who on hell would fly 24 hours to find me there??? Now I am being very careful not to get naked on the beach! Anyway, people talk, people gossip, people want to know everything about our private life. I actually cherish the moments when being asked to sign an autograph. That makes me feel good.
What do the French journalists want to know about your life?
Everything! Actors don’t live quite an ordinary life. My friends literally implore me to write an autobiography. They say that my life is obviously brighter, and more adventurous than any TV series.
Would you like to transfer and live in LA.? The movie industry is there.
I tried a few years ago to settle down in Beverly Hills. Nothing! It was a harsh experience. 800,000 actors working as waiters, gardeners, drivers and all of them waiting for their big break! They say that a failure is a perfect way to get ready for the next new achievements!
What is your favourite role and what is a dream role you have yet to play?
I love them all! I am in love with my profession, from the comic roles to the unusual roles in low budget films. This year I went to the James Bond girl casting but eventually they chose Lea Seydoux. You know, our profession is just like a wheel , if I am ready, next time this role will be mine. I get inspired by Charliz Theron, by her career, by her self confidence. Right now, in the theater, I am working on a role similar to hers in Monster.
Who are your favorite directors today?
The most authentic ones! Especially those who have their own style. Zviagintsev has his own personal style in Russia. In France there is Francois Ozon, and by all means, Cedric Klapich.
We are a making a certain amount of interviews with actors right before the Cannes festival. What is your personal point of view about it? Is it a vanity fair or a movie affair?
Cannes is actually the most important meeting point of the year. Obviously, everybody does whatever they want there. You can stroll the red carpet every day or party every night or you may watch extraordinary films from all around the globe. Some of them you can literary see only in Cannes and that is it! Every serious actor should be there. Especially the American celebrities. They always come to support their films there. Last year I first saw “Leviathan”by Zvyagintzev there. In France they never screened it at all! Plus this is the biggest movie market in the world. I always go every year if I can!
When I was doing your photoshoot for Wanda Catucci in Italy I told you your style reminds me of Hitchcock’s cold blondes. Where does this fragile beauty come from? The Russians are warmer in a certain way.
My Grand Grandfather was from Finland, he came to work in Russia before the revolution. They always ask me if am Swedish or German. Yes, I have been told I had a Hitchcock blond style. That is why I am always being asked to interpret historic roles: from the 20’s, 30’s, and 70’s. I am glad, it brings variety in my experience. One film director once told me: Anna you can interpret anything!
You travel a lot. Where do you prefer to stay most?
Paris, at home, or in New York like Martin Scorsese, his favorite city, and also in Mauritius. I like being at home, I always try to fly there at least once a year. And obviously in Russia with my parents, saunas and Russian borsch!
I was always curious, when does the actress becomes a simple, real woman? Is there any transformation at all? Do you think you always play a part? Or do you cook simple food and talk about simple things as well?
I’ve got a rule – once out of the scene you have to be normal. No theater or mise-en-scene at home! Otherwise you are finished! I’ve seen actors who really got alcohol issues trying to better interpret their roles. People who depend on their fame are also quite unhappy. I know Alain Delon personally very well – I was in relationship with his son for almost 2 years – he is very lonely, he lives with his dogs and misses his past fabulous fame. Although he keeps it with him I feel he is unhappy.
What are your plans for the near future?
I am so superstitious and never talk about my plans!! I am only sure about my professional path. I will keep on going, working hard and whatever I make I will do it with all my heart. Giving it heart and love is the most precious thing for me.