Audrey Tautou

Audrey Tautou
Officier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres

Tautou attending the 2012 Cannes Film Festival
Born Audrey Justine Tautou
(1976-08-09) 9 August 1976
Beaumont, Puy-de-Dôme, France
Occupation Actress, model
Years active 1996–present

Audrey Justine Tautou (French pronunciation: [o.dʁɛ to.tu]; born 9 August 1976)[1] is a French actress and model.[2] Signed by an agent at age 17, she made her acting debut at 18 on television and her feature film debut the following year in Venus Beauty Institute (1999), for which she received critical acclaim and won the César Award for Most Promising Actress. Her subsequent roles in the 1990s and 2000s included Le Libertin and Happenstance (2000).

Tautou achieved international recognition for her lead role in the 2001 film Amélie, which met with critical acclaim and was a major box-office success. Amélie won Best Film at the European Film Awards, four César Awards (including Best Film and Best Director), two BAFTA Awards (including Best Original Screenplay), and was nominated for five Academy Awards.

Tautou has since appeared in films in a range of genres, including the thrillers Dirty Pretty Things and The Da Vinci Code, and the romantic Priceless (2006). She has received critical acclaim for her many roles including the drama A Very Long Engagement (2004) and the biographical drama Coco avant Chanel (2009). She has been nominated three times for the César Award and twice for the BAFTA for Best Actress in a leading role. She became one of the few French actors in history to be invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) in June 2004.[3]

Tautou has modeled for Chanel, Montblanc, L'Oréal and many other companies. She is an active supporter of several charities.

Early life

Tautou was born in Beaumont and was raised in Montluçon. Her father is a dental surgeon, and her mother is a teacher.[1] Tautou showed an interest in acting at an early age and started her acting lessons at the Cours Florent.[4]

Acting career


In 1998, Tautou participated in a Star Search-like competition sponsored by Canal+ called "Jeunes Premiers" (The Young Debuts) and won Best Young Actress at the 9th Béziers Festival of Young Actors. Tonie Marshall gave her a role in the César-winning Venus Beauty Institute (1999, also known as Vénus beauté (institut)). In 2000, she won the Prix Suzanne Bianchetti as her country's most promising young film actress.


In 2001, Tautou rose to international fame for her performance as the eccentric lead in the romantic comedy Amélie (original French title: Le Fabuleux Destin d'Amélie Poulain; English: The Fabulous Destiny of Amélie Poulain), a film directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet. Written by Jeunet with Guillaume Laurant, the film is a whimsical depiction of contemporary Parisian life, set in Montmartre. It tells the story of a shy waitress, who decides to change the lives of those around her for the better, while struggling with her own isolation. The film was an international co-production between companies in France and Germany.

The film met with critical acclaim and was a major box-office success. Amélie won Best Film at the European Film Awards; it won four César Awards (including Best Film and Best Director), two BAFTA Awards (including Best Original Screenplay), and was nominated for five Academy Awards. Grossing over $33 million in limited theatrical release, it is still the highest-grossing French-language film released in the United States.[5]

In 2002, she acted in the British thriller film Dirty Pretty Things directed by Stephen Frears and written by Steven Knight, a drama about two illegal immigrants in London. It was produced by BBC Films and Celador Films. The film was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay and won a British Independent Film Award for "Best Independent British Film" in 2003.

In 2004, she played in A Very Long Engagement, a romantic war film, co-written and directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet starring Tautou. It is a fictional tale about a young woman's desperate search for her fiancé who might have been killed in the Battle of the Somme, during World War I. It was based on a novel of the same name, written by Sebastien Japrisot, first published in 1991. In June, she was invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS).[6]

In 2005, Tautou starred in her first full Hollywood production, opposite Tom Hanks, in the film version of Dan Brown's best-selling novel The Da Vinci Code, directed by Ron Howard and released in May 2006.

She starred alongside Gad Elmaleh in Pierre Salvadori's Hors de prix (Priceless), released 13 December 2006. The film has been compared to Breakfast at Tiffany's.[7]

Tautou starred with Guillaume Canet in Claude Berri's Ensemble, c'est tout in 2007, an adaptation of the eponymous novel by Anna Gavalda.


Tautou at the 41st César Awards dinner in 2016

Tautou played the lead role in the biopic of fashion designer Coco Chanel, titled Coco avant Chanel, and directed by Anne Fontaine.[8][9][10][11] Filming began in Paris in September 2008, and released in France on 22 April 2009. The script is partially based on Edmonde Charles-Roux’s book "L’Irrégulière" ("The Non-Conformist"). Instead of releasing Coco Before Chanel in the United States itself, Warner Bros. let Sony Pictures Classics handle the release there.[12] The film grossed $6 million in the United States.[13][14]

Coco Before Chanel was nominated for four BAFTA Awards, three European Film Awards, six César Awards and the Academy Award for Best Costume Design.

In 2011, she appeared in Delicacy, a French romantic comedy-drama directed by David and Stéphane Foenkinos and based on the novel of the same name by David Foenkinos. David was nominated for the 2012 Best Writing (Adaptation) César Award and the film was nominated as Best Film.[15]

She appeared in the music video of "I Love Your Smile", a song by British singer-songwriter Charlie Winston.[16]

She was the host of the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.[17]

She was a member of the jury of the 2015 Berlin Film Festival.[18]

Public image and modeling career

Tautou began modeling at a very young age, taking modeling courses and other activities, and has modeled for magazines such as Vogue, Elle, Harpers Bazaar, Marie Claire in many countries, and many others.[2]

Tautou was named in 2009 as the next spokesmodel for Chanel No. 5, replacing Nicole Kidman. She was directed in the advertisement by Jean-Pierre Jeunet, with whom she worked on Amélie and A Very Long Engagement. The advertisement was released in 2009 to coincide with the film's release.[19][20] She has also become the face of L'Oreal and Montblanc and several other ad campaigns.[21]

Tautou over the years has been declared a fashionista and icon by the press, appearing in many magazines, fashion, beauty, and culture. She has attended major fashion week events around the world as well as smaller events. The press sometimes refers to her as "The Chanel Muse".[2]

Personal life

She has studied at the Institut Catholique de Paris.[22] A church-goer when young, she has stated that she is "not officially" Catholic.[23]

Tautou says she considers France her base, where she plans to focus her career, rather than in the United States. She told Stevie Wong of The Straits Times "I am, at the end of the day, a French actress. I am not saying I will never shoot an English-language movie again, but my home, my community, my career is rooted in France. I would never move to Los Angeles."[24]


Year Title Role Notes
1999 Venus Beauty Institute Marie Cabourg Film Festival Award for Female Revelation
César Award for Most Promising Actress
Lumières Award for Most Promising Actress
SACD Award for Best Actress
Triste à mourir Caro Short film
2000 Epouse moiÉpouse-moi Marie-Ange
Pretty Devils Anne-Sophie Original title: Voyou, voyelles
Libertin, LeLe Libertin Julie d'Holbach
Happenstance Irène Original title: Le Battement d'ailes du papillon
2001 Amélie Amélie Poulain Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Most Promising Performer
Lumières Award for Best Actress
Sant Jordi Film Award for Best Actress
Nominated - Audience Award for Best Actress
Nominated - BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role
Nominated - César Award for Best Actress
Nominated - Empire Award for Best Actress
Nominated - European Film Award for Best Actress in Leading Role
Nominated - Satellite Award for Best Actress
Nominated - Phoenix Film Critics Society for Best Actress
Nominated - Phoenix Film Critics Society for Best Newcomer
Nominated - Online Film Critics Society for Best Actress
Nominated - Vancouver Film Critics Circle for Best Actress
God Is Great and I'm Not Michèle Original title: Dieu est grand, je suis toute petite
2002 He Loves Me... He Loves Me Not Angélique Original title: À la folie... pas du tout
L'Auberge espagnole Martine Other titles: The Spanish Apartment and Pot Luck
Dirty Pretty Things Senay Gelik Nominated - European Film Award for Best Actress in Leading Role
2003 Les Marins perdus Lalla
Not on the Lips Huguette Verberie Original title: Pas sur la bouche
Happy End Val Chipzik
2004 Very Long Engagement, AA Very Long Engagement Mathilde Nominated - César Award for Best Actress
Nominated - European Film Award for Best Actress in Leading Role
2005 Russian Dolls, TheThe Russian Dolls Martine Original title: Les Poupées russes
2006 Da Vinci Code, TheThe Da Vinci Code Sophie Neveu
Priceless Irène NRJ Ciné Award (shared with Gad Elmaleh) for Best Kiss
2007 Hunting and Gathering Camille Fauque Original title: Ensemble, c'est tout
2009 Coco Before Chanel Gabrielle 'Coco' Chanel Nominated - BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role
Nominated - César Award for Best Actress
2010 De vrais mensonges Emilie Dandrieux Other titles: Beautiful Lies and Full Treatment
2011 Delicacy Nathalie Kerr Original title: La délicatesse
2012 Des vents contraires Sarah Anderen
Thérèse Desqueyroux Thérèse Desqueyroux
2013 Mood Indigo Chloé Original title: L’Écume des jours
Chinese Puzzle Martine Original title: Casse-tête chinois
2015 Microbe & Gasoline Marie-Thérèse Guéret Original title: Microbe et Gasoil
2015 Eternity Valentine
2016 The Odyssey Simone Melchior Pending - Globes de Cristal Award for Best Actress
2017 Going Places
Year Title Role Notes
1996 Coeur de cibleCœur de cible TV movie
1997 La Vérité est un vilain défaut The telephone operator TV movie
1997 Les Cordier, juge et flic Léa TV movie, episode: "Le Crime d'à côté"
1998 La Vieille Barrière A girl in the district TV movie
1998 Bébés boum Elsa TV movie
1998 Chaos technique Lisa TV movie
1998 Julie Lescaut Tracy TV movie, episode: "Bal masqué"
1999 Le Boiteux Blandine Piancet TV movie, episode: "Baby blues"

Theatre credits

Year Show Role Notes
2010 A Doll's House Nora Théâtre de la Madeleine
2011 Tour


  1. 1 2 Age sources
    • "Audrey Tautou". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 22 August 2008. born Aug. 9, 1976/78, Beaumont, Auvergne, France
    • "TAUTOU Audrey". Les Gens du Cinema. Retrieved 17 April 2013. Lieu: BEAUMONT (63-France); Naissance: 9 août 1976; Reférence: Extrait de naissance n° 6672/1976 [translation: Location: BEAUMONT (63-France); Born: August 9, 1976; Reference: Birth Certificate No. 6672/1976]
    • Willsher, Kim (14 April 2013). "Audrey Tautou: how the French learned to love the star of Amélie". The Observer. Retrieved 17 April 2013. Born August 1976. Her father was a dental surgeon, her mother a teacher. She was raised in Montluçon, a town in central France.
    • "A propos de quelques ÉLÈVES CÉLÈBRES…" [About some famous students...]. Collège Jules Ferry Montlucon. Archived from the original on 30 October 2004. née en 1976, élève de 1987 à 1991 [translation: born in 1976, a student from 1987 to 1991]
    • Kangasniemi, Sanna (25 October 2013). "Ainaisesti ujo pariisitar". Helsingin Sanomat (in Finnish) (Friday supplement Nyt). Helsinki. pp. 10–11. Sitten hän vastaa. Syntymävuosi on 1976. ’Mutta pitäisin parempana, jos kirjoittaisitte 1978. Voisitteko kirjoittaa 1978? Kerron teille totuuden ja pyydän teitä valehtelemaan.’ [Then she replies. The birth year is 1976. ‘But I would prefer if you wrote 1978. Could you write 1978? I tell you the truth, and ask you to lie.’]
  2. 1 2 3 "Audrey Tautou, sabia discreción Juan Ignacio Francia" (in Spanish). 2012-06-07. Retrieved 2013-12-01.
  3. Academy Invites 127 to Membership Archived 11 June 2007 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. Les florentins qui font la réputation de notre école, Cours Florent, retrieved 28 October 2009
  5. "Foreign Language Movies at the Box Office". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2013-12-01.
  6. Academy Invites 127 to Membership Archived 11 June 2007 at the Wayback Machine.
  7. Staff (4 April 2008). ""Priceless" romance tale". The Washington Times. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  8. Reynolds, Simon (27 August 2008). "Warner Bros. backs Chanel biopic". Digital Spy.
  9. Tautou at Imdb
  10. Coco Before Chanel at Imdb
  11. "Audrey Tautou: The New Coco Chanel". 3 September 2008. Archived from the original on 20 May 2009. Retrieved 2013-12-01.
  12. Jaafar, Ali (17 April 2009). "Hollywood biz without borders". Variety.
  13. "Coco Before Chanel". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 29 September 2012.
  14. Tobias, Scott (19 November 2004). "Foreign affairs". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on 3 July 2009. Retrieved 20 June 2009.
  15. "Palmarès 2012 - 37 ème cérémonie des César". Retrieved 2013-12-01.
  16. "Audrey Tautou's in music video for Charlie Winston", BBC News, 17 February 2010
  17. "Cannes Film Festival 2013: Audrey Tautou to host opening ceremony". The Telegraph. Retrieved 13 April 2013.
  18. "Berlinale: Prizes of the International Jury".
  19. Snead, Elizabeth (5 May 2008), "Is it a bird or a plane? Sarah Jessica Parker won't save the Costume Gala?", Los Angeles Times, archived from the original on 10 May 2008, retrieved 21 May 2008
  20. "Audrey Tautou new face of Chanel", China Daily, 16 May 2008, archived from the original on 31 May 2008, retrieved 21 May 2008
  21. "Sabia discrección: Audrey Tautou - Levante-EMV". 2012-07-13. Retrieved 2013-12-01.
  22. "Audrey Tautou rêve d’ailleurs" 9 August 2011, Culture-match, Paris Match (in French)
  23. WENN (11 May 2006). "Tautou dismisses Da Vinci controversy". Actress UGO Entertainment. Archived from the original on 24 February 2007.
  24. Wong, Stevie (28 May 2006). "From Amelie to Sophie". The Straits Times. Singapore: The Star Online eCentral. Archived from the original on 19 March 2007.

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