Film gala toasts France, KoreaThis year’s French Film Festival was launched with a Korean picture’s premiere, then followed by spritzes of perfume and pours of champagne.
After the screening of “I Have a Right to Ravage Myself” at the Dongsoong Art Center, guests headed for a reception at Yeongbingwan, the Korean-style function room of the Shilla hotel in central seoul.
The movie was part of “Rendez-vous de Seoul,” this year’s French cultural festival, held earlier this month by the French Cultural Center.
Guests were greeted at the Shilla with a spray of Chance, a new Chanel perfume, and a glass of champagne. The welcome livened the mood for a pleasant banquet on a balmy evening.
The general consensus was that the annual French Film Festival party gets better and more international with each passing season. This was its third year.
During the evening, six-foot-tall Korean models in billowing Chanel gowns glided like ballerinas through the hall and across the manicured lawns. French and Korean actors, meanwhile, expanded their professional turf. And festival participants, diplomats, film industry professionals and a handful of privileged guests mingled over food, wine and hearty laughter.
Here’s a who’s who at Chanel Night at the Rendez-vous de Seoul.
Vincent Perez, the star of “Fanfan la Tulipe,” was the toast of Chanel Night. He had come Korea to promote the film, directed by Gerard Krawczyk and co-starring Penelope Cruz. Mr. Perez is best-known for his role as the seductive French soldier in “Indochine” (1992) with Catherine Denuve.
Wearing an immaculate black Dolce & Gabbana suit, Mr. Perez chatted with the JoongAng Daily:
You’re constantly surrounded by hordes of women. Do the women in your life ever get jealous because of the attention you get or the roles you play play with beautiful leading ladies?
Every time I invited Penelope Cruz to my home, I could feel that my four-year-old daughter was getting sensitive. She wanted to be friends, but made sure that Penelope understood that she’s the daughter. Penelope loves children and gets along very well with my four children.
What language do you speak to Penelope?
Half Spanish and half English. I feel most comfortable in French, though.
Do you ever get frustrated about growing older?
I’m turning 40 next year, and as a man, I actually love getting older and enjoying being a father and all that. I try to stay in shape and I love sports. I do jogging, kickboxing, fencing, yoga ... and I watch what I eat. I love drinking wine, but I don’t as much as I’d like to.
What is your perception of your public image?
In France, I know I’m well-liked because I appear on television and on talk shows. But I know women like me more than men.
In Spain, they know me from the movies “Queen Margot” and “Crow” rather than from television. They seem to like that I have a Spanish name and that I can speak the language.
In Hollywood, I’m just a stereotypical French lover, and I’m fed up with that image.
I’ve played many types of roles, but not all countries get to see all my films.
I’m not sure about Korea, but in Japan, I’m the sensitive pretty boy who believes in women and understands women on a deeper level.
And are you that in person?
by Ines Cho