We talked about everything with Laetitia Casta. Of heart, empathy, fluidity of desires. But also of humor and psychoanalysis. And how to live following the primordial instinct of nature (thanks Gédéon). By focusing on “being”. Beyond the roles, at home and at work.
When it comes to France, one of her modern symbols is Laetitia Casta. Norman mother and Corsican father, a fusion of opposites. She is a top model, film and theater actress, mother of four children, loved by great French designers and mayors who have chosen her to represent the Marianne, symbol of the Republic. She is a natural woman, yet with a thousand facets.
In your interviews you talk a lot about the heart …
“Well, that’s what allows us to live! As long as the heart beats everything else works, doesn’t it? ».
The heart is not only an organ, but also the symbol of love … Could we begin by saying that love is the most important thing in her life?
“Yes sure. There are different types of love: love of others, self-love, love for what you do … (she is served a cup of coffee), love for cappuccino! I really believe that love is the most powerful energy “.
Love is the Christian message par excellence. Do you believe in a world order?
«I believe in something superior, without order or hierarchy. Empathy is my religion. Understanding what the other feels deep inside is what I absolutely prefer “.
In another life she could have read tarot cards.
“I thought you would have told me that I could have been a psychologist or a nurse … I would say that for me magic is rediscovering that primordial instinct that education, religion and society have erased. It interests me, and I don’t need to look for it in the cards, to feel that sixth sense, that strength of being able to stay in the instant that animals have kept intact “.
It is difficult to “stay in the moment, live in the present”.
We are all always a bit at the mercy of feelings of guilt, or the fear of making a mistake, don’t you think?
“I think you’re not talking about fear, but about ego.”
Do you never feel overwhelmed by the ego?
“I do everything to get rid of it. Imagine a sheet raised by the wind but held by a stone: the ego is that stone, in the center of the sheet. Every morning I concentrate on taking it off ».
What child was Laetitia Casta? Some of her statements about her childhood describe a setting worthy of Perrault’s fairy tales, an enchanted house in the middle of the woods… Was it really so?
“Yup. I had no toys, my playmates were the seasons, flowers, plants, insects, animals, trees … Real encounters, a discovery every day ».
Domestic or wild animals?
“Both of them. I had a goose called Gédéon “.
Female or male?
“I don’t know, let’s say a non-binary specimen, it was a goose ahead of its time! Gédéon curled up on my neck and took my hair with her beak, as if she wanted to comb or caress it. She followed me everywhere. We spent a summer together, then I had to go back to school. She forgot me, and when I saw her she bit my leg. She no longer recognized me. ’
As a child, were you already clear about the homo / hetero distinction?
“It was more a question of gender than sexuality. I was wondering: why am I a girl and not a boy? ».
And when she grew up, when it came to fashion, she always loved the tuxedo …
“I’ve always preferred men’s clothes to women’s ones. Do you think that as a child I wanted to wear a skirt and pants together. I didn’t understand why the skirt had to be for me and why she should have defined me. “
Maybe men’s armor is more robust?
“No more than the female one. My masculine side is as important as the feminine: together they make me strong ».
Basically she agrees with Freud, who saw a universal psychic bisexuality.
However, the object of her desire was men.
«Life wanted it like this, but it could have gone differently. People arouse feelings and emotions in me that are independent of their gender. For example, what attracts me about a man is not so much the masculine side of her, but the feminine one. I have no need for the stereotypical representation of the “strong” male, of people rather the fragility strikes me. I’ve never fallen in love with a woman, but my first experiences discovering sexuality were with a girl».
A very intimate revelation.
“Yes, and it doesn’t bother me. At a certain age we do not know too well which direction to take, it is then life that puts us in our path. But the choice is not so clear-cut. I believe that a certain ambivalence remains in us ».
Her love stories were born from artistic partnerships. In a “normal” life, do you think she could have searched for a soul mate with apps like Meetic or Tinder?
“Never! And the funny thing is that even Sahteene, my eldest daughter who is 20, couldn’t. Like me, you need immediacy, the present ».
He has repeatedly stressed how important it is for her to be a mother.
“I reply that the important thing is” to be “, even before” being a mother “. I have built a life with my children but it is I, Laetitia, who carries it on. You are horrified by the stereotype of the perfect mother. I don’t have, and I don’t want to have power over my children. I am very careful because I myself, as a child, realized to what extent and how quickly an adult can abuse her power “.
It is rare for a parent to be aware of this.
“I know because I have suffered from it firsthand. And because I don’t want my kids to go through the same things. I work a lot on myself through psychoanalysis ».
What is the most important element of you in your analysis process?
“The possibility of carving out a space-time to say everything I want without being judged.”
Before turning to acting, she was a super model. At the age of 15 she had already transformed her body into an image. Taking a step back, were you aware of the gaze of men at the time?
“Yes, but I didn’t understand why. I thought I had something wrong, so I didn’t talk about it. Then, strangely, it was the world of fashion that protected me, kept me like a bubble: the external look had become professional ».
It all started in 1993, when she was elected Miss Lumio. She said: “It wasn’t premeditated, when I found myself on the village stage for the parade I was furious. I was afraid of being made fun of by my friends ». But who had entered it?
“I had an Italian great-grandmother, Zelinda, I adored her, she had arrived in Corsica looking for work. She wanted nothing more than her grandchildren to participate in that contest. The somewhat pretentious pride of the elderly … it was my brother who signed up, secretly. To me, so morbidly shy, it would never have crossed my mind ».
What kind of show was it?
“They had to get me some clothes: a bathing suit – it wasn’t easy to show me half naked – and a pair of high-heeled shoes. I felt like a little girl in a woman’s shoes. But I did it for grandma Zelinda, because I could earn some money and invite her to the restaurant, which I later did “.
A delightful story.
“Yup. Very simple, like a village festival ».
Her biographers have at least mystified the importance of this competition.
“Because a photographer who was there then passed my name to a modeling agency. But this was a coincidence ».
Do you consider yourself a lucky person?
“Lucky to recognize luck.”
A fortune that can become a double-edged sword: Bardot’s celebrity was an ordeal. Amy Winehouse and Jim Morrison, comets with a splendid career, were punishing themselves for having such a chance.
“Ah, you see it that way? I rather see hypersensitive beings who, thanks to their dazzling talent, understand everything and give us crazy gifts, with such precocity as to burn everything during their passage ».
Did you love Amy Winehouse?
“Very very much. She unfortunately she couldn’t control her wounds. In any case, I think that the human being does not love himself. The path to love each other is always complicated, and for this reason it is necessary to be able to love others better. The illusion of celebrity is to think that since we are loved, we will love each other more. It is the exact opposite “.
Have you ever been attracted to these shady areas?
«It happened, let’s say that I“ skirted ”these areas. But I love life too much to dive into it. “
To love life is also to have the notion of death.
“It’s obvious. A few years ago, in Corsica, one night I suddenly perceived the immensity of the sky. In the space of three seconds I was overwhelmed by the anguish of being absolutely nothing. I was shocked. Even as a child this caused me melancholy: that strong awareness of being mortal ».
Are you afraid of dying?
“No, and that’s why I enjoy life so much. But you know, in Corsica the dead are watching us. We are in contact with them. I remember my grandmother in her coffin, I touched her, hugged her … Even being close to nature taught me death: the everyday life of a bird is spending time avoiding being captured by a predator … “.
Her popularity has given her a lot of love. Are you not afraid of losing him, or that she will fade away?
“You talk about love but you forget humor. Humor saves us from many situations. People see me as a white screen on which to project whatever comes into their head. They are only fantasies and we must not give them importance: it is not the gaze of others that can define me ».
Do you think the media impose a stereotypical image of women?
“It’s more complicated than that. If I think of rappers, I see women of super-powerful femininity: they have talent, money. But it would be interesting if, instead of making it sacred, we remembered that a woman can be as dangerous as a man. Not necessarily a poor innocent and fragile victim. When we understand the woman in her complexity we will have taken a step forward. Let’s get out of the cliché or a virgin or a whore, it’s definitely dated “.
She gives a lot of space to humor. But in fashion, apart from the inimitable humor of Karl Lagerfeld, the imagination of Jean-Paul Gaultier or Thierry Mugler, the madness of Hussein Chalayan, the laughter of Jean-Paul Goude, it is not so frequent …
“Forget Saint Laurent. In her vision there was an extravagance very close to humor. Jean-Paul Goude was also extraordinary. The grimaces and faces he asked you to express: when you really trust someone, it’s nice to let go! I loved his way of breaking away from the classic canons of shots. Today, it is true, there is more pressure on creatives and less room for humor. They always have to answer to someone, capitalism is everywhere ».
From L’Oréal to Victoria’s Secret, she was the favorite model of major capitalist brands. Isn’t there a paradox in this statement of her?
«Existential dilemma! At 18, I felt guilty. But I was lucky enough to meet an intelligent psychoanalyst who told me: “As long as you do things sincerely, you will have nothing to fear.” This sentence has definitely made me blunt ”.
Do you consider yourself a politically aligned person?
“I am a fan of Christiane Taubira (former French Minister of Justice under the presidency of François Hollande, known for her strong support for the law that introduced same-sex marriage in France in 2013. She had presented her candidacy, which was later withdrawn, for the presidential elections. of 2022, ed). I appreciate her intelligence, her curiosity. She is a “centered” woman: masculine and feminine in her are perfectly balanced. And I like this ».
In the face of the hateful speeches of the far-right polemicist Éric Zemmour, the idea that a black woman could be elected president of the Republic is certainly a positive element.
“He It’s funny that he asks me. I would tell her about her talent. Of her Of her humanity. I don’t like the idea of dividing people by color, gender, label. In the same way, you cannot have experienced everything that is recited: you don’t need to have been a Romanian pianist to play Clara Haskil “.
You often say that “life is more important than cinema”. This amazes me, I have a more romantic conception of art.
“But how can cinema be nourished if you don’t live? It is like an empty well! After the cinema, life remains, not the other way around. Sure, she can keep all of her movies inside, but what do you do with them? What remains? ».
Laetitia, are there many secrets behind your light?
«More than secrets I have dreams. Many dreams. And the keys to open secret doors. But no real secret ».
And what kind of dreams are these?
“Of such a nature as to be realized.”
At this point, nothing to add: the journey to planet Happiness seems well underway. Waiting for the next eclipse.
Author: Michael Zippo
Sources: VanityFair, IO Donna