Ludivine Sagnier
Birth Date:
July 3, 1979
Birth Place:
La Celle-Saint-Cloud, Yvelines, France
5' 3"
Famous for:
Her role in '8 femmes' (2002)
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La Petit Lili


"I'm much more confident in front of a camera, hidden by a character, enhanced by makeup, so I can go much further than I can in real life. Sexual acting is painful, because even though you're pretending, you have the skin of the person in front of you, and it's not the skin you wish you had. After that, you run into the shower to get rid of everything." Ludivine Sagnier (on performing naked on-camera).

French actress Ludivine Sagnier became an international sensation after portraying Julie, a skinny-dipping sensualist, in her English-language film debut, Francis Ozon's psychological thriller Swimming Pool (2003). The 5' 3" blonde beauty with piercing blue eyes who often draws comparisons to such legendary French sexpots as Brigitte Bardot and Catherine Deneuve has charmed audiences with her roles as Catherine, the victim's youngest daughter in the French musical mystery 8 femmes (2002; aka 8 Women), a decidedly sexy fairy Tinker Bell in the more mature, new live-action version of Peter Pan (2003), and as the title role of temptress to an older film director in La Petit Lili (2003; aka Little Lili). She recently played Nick Nolte's daughter in Paris, je t'aime (2006) and will star in the upcoming films Un secret, Claude Miller's adaptation of the novel by Philippe Grimbert, and a biopic about notorious gangster Jacques Mesrine, L' Ennemi public n° 1 and its follow-up, L' Instinct de mort (aka Death Instinct), starring Vincent Cassel.

"I wouldn't say 'no' to a love scene with Josh Hartnett. But I'd be more interested in meeting directors than actors. Directors are more important, because they own the story and they're the ones that make you improve or not." Ludivine Sagnier (on whom she interested to work with in the future).

A longtime up-and-comer in French cinema, Sagnier was named as one of European films' Shooting Stars by European Film Promotion in 2001. She is currently involved with French actor Nicolas Duvauchelle and has one daughter with him.

“Hollywood is a wonderful machine for making big movies. In France, we make smaller and more personal films, but if things keep changing this will disappear. The industry in Italy is practically gone. Cinecitta now is used mostly by filmmakers from others places, like Martin Scorsese.”

French Beauty

Childhood and Family:

"I don't need much money to live the way I live in Paris. I'm only 23 and I don't have great material needs, but I do have big artistic ambitions..." Ludivine Sagnier.

In La Celle-Saint-Cloud, Yvelines, France, Ludivine Sagnier was born on July 3, 1979. She has one sister named Delphine.

“It's impossible to explain to people who you are in a five-minute interview on TV.” Ludivine Sagnier.

Sagnier attended Y.D. Hieronimus Drama School, France, where she began studying acting. She later went to the Conservatory of Dramatic Art and won prizes for Modern Drama and also Classical Drama.

"When I was a kid I had a crush on Stevie Wonder. I don't know why now, because he's not that handsome." Ludivine Sagnier.

On March 25, 2005, Sagnier welcomed her first child, a daughter named Bonnie. The father is Sagnier's boyfriend, French actor Nicolas Duvauchelle.

"I just date people who earn a million dollars a month. [Laughs] Actually my boyfriend doesn't earn that much money. He's a stage actor, so he doesn't have a penny in his pocket, but he's the person I love." Ludivine Sagnier.

Swimming Pool


"I don't act to be popular, or see my face on the cover of magazines every time I go out to get coffee. I don't want to think about me all the time, and what I look like." Ludivine Sagnier.

At the age 10, Ludivine Sagnier made her foray into acting, making her film debut in Pascal Thomas’ drama comedy Les Maris, Les Femmes, Les Amants (1989). She followed it up with a co-starring role in Alain Resnais' comedic movie I Want to Go Home (1989; aka Je veux rentrer à la maison), alongside Gérard Depardieu, and a starring role in Martine Bureau's 9-minute film, Le Pont du silence (1990). She also reunited with Gerard Depardieu in Cyrano De Bergerac (1990), writer/director Jean-Paul Rappeneau's Oscar-winning romantic drama comedy that also stars Anne Brochet.

On the small screen, the new comer be seen in the made-for-television movies Vacances au purgatoire (1992), Le Secret d'Iris (1996), Meurtres sans risque (1998) and Passion interdite (1998). She was also a regular in the short-lived sitcom "La Famille Fontaine" (1992) and was spotted as a guest in a May 1999 episode of the cop drama series "Mission protection rapprochée."

In the late 1990s, Sagnier returned to the big screen and was cast in Djamel Bensalah's comedy Le Ciel, les oiseaux,... et ta mère! (aka Boys on the Beach), Charles Matton's conventional biographic movie about the Dutch painter and etcher, Rembrandt (starring Klaus Maria Brandauer), and Diane Kurys' Les Enfants du siècle (aka The Children of the Century; premiered out of competition at the 1999 Cannes Film Festival), which was based on the true tale of the torrid love affair between two French literary icons of the 19th Century, novelist George Sand (played by Juliette Binoche) and the poet Alfred de Musset (played by Benoit Magimel). She also starred in two short films, Matthias Fégyvères' 12-minute Mon frère and Guillaume Bréaud's 18-minute Acide animé.

Entering the new millennium, Sagnier appeared in the telemovies La Banquise, based on the novel by Jean-Pierre Chabrol, and Des monstres a l'état pur, a short drama comedy. On the big screen, she portray Anna, the buxom blond fiancee of Malik Zidi's character in Gouttes d'eau sur pierres brûlantes (aka Water Drops on Burning Rocks), François Ozon's adaptation of a German play by Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Tropfen auf heisse Steine, and starred in Jérôme Lévy's drama comedy Bon plan (aka Great Idea). She also played the babysitter to Karin Viard and Charles Berling's children who hangs herself in Laurent Tuel's mystery/thriller drama Un jeu d'enfants (aka Children's Play).

Sagnier went on to star in actor/writer/director Yvan Attal's romantic drama comedy Ma femme est une actrice (2001; aka My Wife Is an Actress; starring Charlotte Gainsbourg and Terence Stamp) and in writer/director Ian Simpson's drama comedy Toothache (2002; aka Rage de dent). She eventually received her first big break in François Ozon's comedy murder-mystery film 8 femmes (2002; aka 8 Women), based on the play by Robert Thomas. She portrayed Catherine, the youngest daughter of the murdered French industrialist, alongside Catherine Deneuve and Isabelle Huppert.

“With the success of 8 Women, we were invited to big restaurants, big hotels. And, you know, I'm a gourmand. I put on a lot of weight.” Ludivine Sagnier.

Following her breakout performance in 8 Women, Sagnier starred in Freddy Busso's short film Les Frères Hélias (2002) and provided her voice for Jean Cubaud's animated movie La Légende de Parva (2003). She also went back to the small screen, playing the titular role of a young woman who hides a Jewish 9-year-old boy in the telemovie set during the German occupation of France, Marie Marmaille (2002) and portraying Hortense de Beauharnais, Queen of Holland and the daughter of Napoleon Bonaparte, in the Emmy-winning historical miniseries "Napoléon" (2002; Christian Clavier played the title role), which aired on the Arts and Entertainment (A&E) channel in the United States. Additionally, she guest starred in an episode of the French cop drama series "Navarro."

"When I see (Swimming Pool; 2003), I don't see me. The character composition was strong so I could have some distance and not feel I was exhibiting my own intimacy, but her's. I was hidden behind that perfect body... I'm playing a sexual fantasy in Swimming Pool, so certainly people are going to see me like this, but I don't want to play the sexy girl all the time. I don't think it really suits me." Ludivine Sagnier.

Sagnier made her third collaboration with director François Ozon in the psychological thriller Swimming Pool (2003; alongside Charlotte Rampling), playing Julie, the party girl with reckless, sexually-charged lifestyle. The film was financially successful and both Rampling's and Sagnier's acting received praise from critics.

"The Sixth Sense or Fight Club...maybe more Fight Club. Of course, there's a twist at the end, but you don't really know exactly what's the truth, so it could also be compared to Mulholland Drive, which hovers between fiction and reality. It gives a few clues here and there but never gives all the keys, so you're always a bit lost." Ludivine Sagnier (on comparing Swimming Pool to other movies).

After playing a sexual fantasy, Sagnier was cast as mute fairy Tinker Bell in Peter Pan (2003; Jeremy Sumpter played the title role), a live-action film by P. J. Hogan based on the classic children's play and novel by J. M. Barrie. On being recognized as Tinker Bell, Sagnier said: "I'd say people recognize me but having children recognize me is the best. It is a very special thing. Suddenly you feel like you have the power to make the children's dreams come true and it's better than anything else."

She later described the difference between the new live-action version of Peter Pan and the cartoons or Spielberg's version by saying: "They all avoid the ambiguity of Peter and the Oedipus crisis. If Freud saw the Peter Pan cartoon, he'd be shouting in his grave, 'Let me out!' Everybody hears about Peter Pan Syndrome, but in the versions you may have seen you never understand it. 'I don't want to grow up.' What does that mean regarding your parents, sexuality, adolescence and being an orphan? This new version is much more realistic, much more contemporary and much more honest."

2003 also saw Sagnier as Lili, a gracefully beautiful and sexy young local girl who dreams of becoming a famous actress, in Claude Miller's film adaptation of Anton Chekhov's play, La Petite Lili (aka Little Lili; 2004 US release). It was another Sagnier's film showed in competition at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival besides Swimming Pool. Additionally, she co-starred with Daniel Auteuil and Kristin Scott Thomas in Pascal Bonitzer's dramatic film Petites coupures (aka Small Cuts).

After starring in Xavier Giannoli's disappointing romantic drama Une aventure and appearing in the little seen comedy Foon (both in 2005), Sagnier joined an ensemble cast of American, British and French movie actors, playing Nick Nolte's daughter, in Paris, je t'aime (2006; aka Paris, I Love You). The film, directed by a group of internationally renowned directors, had its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival and opened in the United States on May 4, 2007.

Sagnier then played the daughter to Nathalie Baye's character in Jacques Fieschi's film version of Georges Simenon's short story, La Californie (aka Le Chemin sans issue) and played a role in writer/director Jean Marboeuf's Coup de sang (both in 2006). Afterward, director Laurent Tirard handed her the role of Célimène, a beautiful bright young widow, in his biopic about French playwright/actor, Molière (2007; Romain Duris portrayed the title role), and co-starred with Louis Garrel and Clotilde Hesme in Christophe Honoré's musical French film Les Chansons d'amour, which was was nominated to the Golden Palm at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival. Her latest film, La Fille coupée en deux, a thriller by Claude Chabrol, was recently released in French on August 8, 2007. In the film, she played th efemale lead role of Gabrielle Deneige, a beautiful and ambitious young woman who falls in love with an immoral author but marries an unstable young millionaire.

As for her upcoming film projects, Sagnier has wrapped Un secret, Claude Miller's adaptation of the novel by Philippe Grimbert. She is currently filming L' Ennemi public n° 1 (aka The Death Instinct), Jean-François Richet's biopic about notorious gangster Jacques Mesrine (played by Vincent Cassel), France's public enemy No. 1 during the 1970s, and its follow-up, L' Instinct de mort.

“The French have their double standards. For example, I don't think anyone in France could make a movie like Larry Clark's Bully, because he combines sex and violence and humor. And, recently, there was this photo of Christina Aguilera on the magazine covers, where she was naked from the back, wearing only a G-string. The French were shocked ... and called her bad names. It was a scandal for two weeks.” Ludivine Sagnier.


  • Romy Schneider: 2003

  • Chicago International Film Festival: Best Female Performance, La Petite Lili, 2003

  • Cannes Film Festival: Chopard Trophy - Female Revelation, 2002

  • Berlin International Film Festival: Outstanding Artistic Achievement, 8 Femmes, 2002

  • European Film: Best Actress, 8 Femmes, 2002

  • Acteurs à l'Écran: Prix Musidora - Best Actress, Acide Animé, 1999

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