Monday 23 April 2018

Juliette Binoche on best actress in the English Patient 1997

Lauren Bacall said to me: 'That was my Oscar. You stole my Oscar'

Juliette Binoche photographed by Roberto Frankenberg at her home in Paris
Juliette Binoche photographed by Roberto Frankenberg at her home in Paris

'I was most nervous when I had to present the award for best costume. I remember my heart beating as though I had been sprinting, but afterwards I was very calm.

While they were announcing the nominees for my category, I felt very serene. I didn't realise I had won until my agent tapped me on the elbow, telling me I had to move. He was crying and I was thinking, 'Why?' It felt like a dream.

First of all I wanted to give it to Lauren Bacall, because we were all expecting her to win it [for The Mirror Has Two Faces]. So I said, 'She deserves it,' and I was looking for her in the crowd. I asked, 'Where are you?', and she didn't lift her hand - if she had, I would have given it to her. I thought, 'Well, never mind then, I'll keep it.'

Later, I saw her and she said to me, 'That was my Oscar. You stole my Oscar. I got the Golden Globe, I got the SAG Award, but I wanted this one'. She does have a dry sense of humour, but that was the way she felt: it came from the heart. And I did feel, that after such a big career, they should have given it to her.

I had a hard time finding a place for it when I brought it back home. I didn't know how to deal with it, especially as a mother. I don't want my children to think of me as too important, or a show off. So I keep it in my office. It's simpler.'

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