Facing the imperial Fabrice Luchini, she is the charming asset of this judicial film by Christian Vincent. But who is Sidse Babett Knudsen?
On the occasion of the rebroadcast of The Erminethis evening on France 2, we are republishing our portrait of the actress Sidse Babett Knudsenexcellent against Fabrice Luchini. Since this film, she has multiplied projects: the series Westworld, The Girl from Brestby Emmanuelle Bercot, as well asInferno, Ron Howard’s blockbuster. In 2023, she is starring in two new French films: Good heaven ! by Laurent Tirard and Club Zero by Jessica Hausner
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News of November 24, 2015: France, welcoming land. The formula also applies to foreign actors who bring joy, sometimes greatness, to our cinema. In this field, actresses occupy a special place: from Léa Massari has Victoria Abril And Monica Bellucciof Martha Keller has Kristin Scott Thomas And Diane Krugerpassing by the essential Romy Schneider, there are many female stars that the French public has adopted and integrated into the national heritage. The Danish Sidse Babett Knudsen will she follow the same path? Will “Sissé” succeed Sissy in the hearts of the French?
2010. The broadcast of the series Borgen in Denmark is shaking up the series-loving planet. Everyone only has eyes for Birgitte Nyborg, this woman of power that Sidse Babett Knudsen embodies with a mixture of cold seduction, feminine sweetness and martial firmness. The influence of the series – praised for its writing qualities – is such in the country of Andersen that it would, according to some, have convinced undecided voters to vote for Helle Thorning-Schmidt, Prime Minister, also a centrist, from 2011 to 2015. The legend is in progress. On Arte, where it has been broadcast since 2012, Borgen is a hit with audiences like everywhere else in the world. Sidse Babett Knudsen is the first to benefit from this overexposure. The Wikipedia page dedicated to her quickly mentions her mastery of English but also of French, which she learned during the six years she spent with us when she was a student. Useful precision when, like her, we come from a country, certainly dynamic from a cinematographic point of view, but where only 25 to 30 films are produced per year (compared to 200 in France) and from which only emerge three filmmakers of international stature (Lars Von Trier, Thomas Vinterberg, Susanne Bier).
The woman in leather
It is well known: the English shoot first. The first post-Borgen for Sidse will therefore be British. In the formidable The Duke of Burgundy of Peter Strickland, she takes the viewers of the series by surprise by playing an aristo lover of SM games that she practices with her handywoman. Strapped in leather outfits that reveal her voluptuous figure, Sidse, in her triumphant forties, disturbs spectators of all ages and sexes with unparalleled chic. She is not only beautiful, she has some dog, a je ne sais quoi of Latin animality passed through the sieve of Nordic restraint. Above all, she perpetuates this image of mistress-wife that she established in Borgen and of which his following roles seem to offer subtle variations.
The mature woman
Christian Vincent in turn succumbs to Sidse’s charisma. For The Erminea film which marks his reunion with Fabrice Luchini 25 years later The Discreet, the French director calls on the Danish actress who plays a great surgeon called to be a juror in a trial led by Luchini as president of the Atrabilaire Assize Court. Who better than her could give the answer to the greatest French scene-stealer by opposing him with an immediate charisma, an – almost – mute presence? Who better than her to embody the fantasy of a misanthrope? Sidse. Twice Sidse. This duo of opposites, ice and fire, eat up the screen with rare obviousness.
Sidse’s international career is only just beginning and, strangely, follows the film of Tom Hanks that she will find one after the other in A Hologram for the King of Tom Tykwer and in Inferno of Ron Howard. She will also be Westworldthe highly anticipated new series of Abrams taken from the anticipation film Mondwest. Sidse is not letting go of the hexagon, however. Emmanuelle Bercotacting prize at Cannes for My king and director of Heads up, chose her to play Irène Frachon, this pulmonologist who denounced the Mediator scandal. Another role of a strong woman about which Bercot recently told us that she saw no one other than Sidse to take on it. Neither do we, to be honest. “Sisse” on a royal road?