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Anne Parillaud
Anne Parillaud Deauville 2014.jpg
Parillaud in 2014
Born (1960-05-06) 6 May 1960 (age 63)
Paris, France
Occupation Actress
Years active 1977–2012
(m. 1986; div. 1991)

(m. 2005; div. 2010)
Children 3

Anne Parillaud (French: [an paʁijo]; born 6 May 1960) is a French actress who has been active since 1977. She is best known internationally for playing the title character in Luc Besson's film La Femme Nikita.


Parillaud was born in Paris. While in school she studied ballet and her ambition was to become a lawyer, but a role during summer vacation – when she was only 16 – in Michel Lang's L'hôtel de la plage (1978) launched her into the world of film. She had a three-year relationship with actor Alain Delon and co-starred with him in his only two films as director, Pour la peau d'un flic (1981) and Le Battant (1983).

She met director Luc Besson and they started a relationship. They married in 1986, but the couple separated shortly after he directed her in La Femme Nikita (1990). La Femme Nikita was an especially intense experience for Parillaud:

"For a while, she was in me like a demon. I would do things I normally would not do. She was awkward, depressed, full of despair. But to me there was also a spiritual underline to Nikita. In a very excessive way, she is a loudspeaker of the youth of society today. She destroys herself because she doesn't believe in anything on Earth."

In preparation for the role, she underwent three months of judo lessons and target practice to hone her skills as a government assassin: "I hate guns, I hate violence, I hate judo." Her early ballet training also came in handy for one amusing scene though she modestly downplays her physical gifts, saying only, "I have a chewing gum kind of body. I just forget about the bones." Despite the glamour and danger of her character, Parillaud cautions, "It never happens to me, this kind of story."

After the international success of La Femme Nikita, Parillaud left France to star in three films abroad: Map of the Human Heart, Innocent Blood, and Frankie Starlight. She has said regarding the experience of playing a vampire in John Landis's Innocent Blood:

I fell in love with Marie in Innocent Blood because she wasn't born a vampire; she never decided she wanted to be. For me, it was a parable to talk about how you deal with this problem, which is when you are different. You think or you live or you want something different from everyone else. People don't follow you, because it's scary. You are quite alone in your choices.

In 2010 she starred in the French psychological thriller In Their Sleep which was directed by Caroline du Potet and Eric du Potet.

Personal life

Parillaud's first husband was Luc Besson, with whom she has a daughter, Juliette Besson, born in 1987. She became an actress.

In 2005, Parillaud married Jean Michel Jarre. They divorced in 2010.

Selected filmography

Anne Parillaud Cannes (cropped)
Parillaud at Cannes in 1998
Year Title Role Director
1977 Un amour de sable uncredited Christian Lara
1978 L'Hôtel de la plage Estelle Delambre Michel Lang
1979 Écoute voir Chloé/Moune Hugo Santiago
1980 Girls Catherine Flavin Just Jaeckin
Patrizia Patricia Cook Hubert Frank
1981 Pour la peau d'un flic Charlotte Alain Delon
1983 Le Battant Nathalie Alain Delon
1988 Juillet en septembre Marie Sébastien Japrisot
1989 Che ora è? Loredana Ettore Scola
1990 La Femme Nikita Nikita Luc Besson
1992 Innocent Blood Marie John Landis
1993 Map of the Human Heart Albertine Vincent Ward
1994 À la folie Alice Diane Kurys
1995 Frankie Starlight Bernadette Michael Lindsay-Hogg
1996 Passage à l'acte Isabelle Francis Girod
Dead Girl Helen Catherine Howe Adam Coleman Howard
1998 The Man in the Iron Mask Queen Mother Anne of Austria Randall Wallace
Shattered Image Jessie Markham Raúl Ruiz
1999 Une pour toutes Olga Duclos Claude Lelouch
2002 Gangsters Nina Delgado Olivier Marchal
2004 Deadlines Julia Müller Ludi Boeken and Michael A. Lerner
Promised Land Anne Amos Gitai
2005 Tout pour plaire Florence Cécile Telerman
2007 Demandez la permission aux enfants Anna Sebag Éric Civanyan
Une vieille maîtresse Mme de Solcy Catherine Breillat
2009 L'Imbroglio Nel Lenzuolo Beatrice Alfonso Arau
2010 In Their Sleep Sarah Caroline Du Potet and Eric Du Potet
2010 la marquise des ombres Madame de Brinvilliers
2012 What the Day Owes the Night Madame Cazenave


  • César Award for Best Actress in 1991 for La Femme Nikita
  • David di Donatello Awards for Best Foreign Actress in 1991 for La Femme Nikita
  • Paris Film Festival for Best Actress in 2004 for Deadlines
  • Tokyo International Film Festival for Special Mention in 1993 for Map of the Human Heart

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Anne Parillaud para niños

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