In her most revealing interview yet, actress Léa Seydoux talks about sexism in the film industry, her own sexuality, suffering from depression, and the impact of the recent Paris attacks on her life.
On The Paris Attacks
'We were a few metres from where it happened. It was very strange…I stayed in my house for a week and I didn't go out. I was obsessed by the news... I was just very sad. And it was like a big giant depression all over Paris and everybody was talking about this, obsessed with it. And for me, I mean, I don't think I'm scared of terrorism. I don't want to lose my freedom because of that. I want to still live like normal. But even me, I was paranoid for a few weeks.'
On Sexism In Film
'It's a misogynistic world. It's because of what we ask of actresses. We ask them to be sensitive, fragile, desirable. And men? We ask them to be strong and virile. But you can turn this into a strength. Because when I decide to do nudity, it's something that I decide. I feel that I have the choice. I'm fine with it. I think it becomes a problem when you feel the victim, when you victimise yourself. I'm never the victim.'
On Having Depression
'It was terrible. I was extremely melancholic... For me the world was terrible. I wasn't happy. You know, it's almost maybe chemical. I was starting to work [as an actress] but I wasn't famous. And for some people, it's exciting. But for me... on a personal level, I was suffering. I think it was [coming to terms with] the end of my teenage years.'
On Her Sexuality
'I think [that] even if you're not gay, you can have an attraction at a moment for a woman. And [on Blue Is The Warmest Colour] I think I had the possibility to experience this, you know? I've never had any relationship with women [but] sometimes cinema gives you the possibility to experience things. So it was like a way to experience that drive, that attraction for women.'
On Being A Bond Woman
'I really loved everything. You know, for a little French actress to be on this huge film, it's exciting. I mean, it's James Bond, you know? It's entertainment. And we French are not used to entertainment.'
Photographer Kai Z Feng, stylist Anne Marie Curtis. Lea wears Louis Vuitton on the cover.
Read the full interview with Lea Seydoux in the June issue of ELLE UK - on sale 4 May.