César Award for Best Supporting Actress

The César Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role (French: César de la meilleure actrice dans un second rôle) is one of the César Awards, presented annually by the Académie des Arts et Techniques du Cinéma to recognize the outstanding performance in a supporting role of an actress who has worked within the French film industry during the year preceding the ceremony. Nominees and winner are selected via a run-off voting by all the members of the Académie.

César de la meilleure actrice dans un second rôle
César Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Awarded forBest Actress in a Supporting Role
Presented byAcadémie des Arts et Techniques du Cinéma
First awarded1976
Currently held byKarin Viard for Little Tickles (2019)



Superlative Best Actress Best Supporting Actress Overall
(including Most Promising Actress)
Actress with most awards Isabelle Adjani 5 Dominique Blanc 3 Isabelle Adjani 5
Actress with most nominations Isabelle Huppert 14 Noémie Lvovsky
Karin Viard
6 Isabelle Huppert 16
Actress with most nominations
without ever winning
Emmanuelle Béart
Charlotte Gainsbourg
Cécile de France
5 Noémie Lvovsky 6 Noémie Lvovsky 6
Film with most nominations Too Beautiful for You
The Ceremony
8 Women
In Safe Hands
2 The Crisis 3 Venus Beauty Institute
8 Women
Oldest winner Emmanuelle Riva 85 Suzanne Flon 72 Emmanuelle Riva 85
Oldest nominee Emmanuelle Riva 85 Claude Gensac 87 Claude Gensac 87
Youngest winner Sandrine Bonnaire 18 Déborah Lukumuena 22 Sandrine Bonnaire 18
Youngest nominee Charlotte Gainsbourg 14 Christine Pascal 22 Charlotte Gainsbourg 14

As of 2019, 137 actresses have been nominated in the category, with a total of 34 different winners. The average age at first nomination is 41 and the average age of winners at first win is 38.

With three wins (1991, 1993, 1999), Dominique Blanc holds the record of most César Award for Best Supporting Actress. Eight actresses have won the César twice: Marie-France Pisier (1976, 1977), Nathalie Baye (1981, 1982), Suzanne Flon (1984, 1990), Annie Girardot (1996, 2002), Valérie Lemercier (1994, 2007), Julie Depardieu (2004, 2008), Anne Alvaro (2001, 2011) and Karin Viard (2003, 2019).

Marie-France Pisier and Nathalie Baye have won their two awards in consecutive years. Along with Adèle Haenel, they are the only three performers to have won two competitive acting César in a row. Including her Best Actress César won in 1983, Nathalie Baye is also the only performer to have won an acting César in three consecutive years, in 1981, 1982 and 1983.

Noémie Lvovsky and Karin Viard tie for the record of most nominations with 6, Lvovsky also holding the record of most nominations without ever winning the award. Stéphane Audran holds the record of most consecutive nominations with 3 (1982, 1983, 1984).

Eight women have won both the César Award for Best Supporting Actress and the César Award for Best Actress:

  • Nathalie Baye (Best Supporting Actress in 1981 and 1982, Best Actress in 1983 and 2006),
  • Annie Girardot (Best Actress in 1977, Best Supporting Actress in 1996 and 2002),
  • Dominique Blanc (Best Supporting Actress in 1991, 1993 and 1999, Best Actress in 2001),
  • Karin Viard (Best Actress in 2000, Best Supporting Actress in 2003 and 2019),
  • Marion Cotillard (Best Supporting Actress in 2005, Best Actress in 2008),
  • Emmanuelle Devos (Best Actress in 2002, Best Supporting Actress in 2010),
  • Adèle Haenel (Best Supporting Actress in 2014, Best Actress in 2015),
  • Catherine Frot (Best Supporting Actress in 1997, Best Actress in 2016).

Nathalie Baye is the only actress with multiple wins in both categories.

Three films have received both accolades: One Deadly Summer in 1984 (Best Actress to Isabelle Adjani, Best Supporting Actress to Suzanne Flon), Indochine in 1993 (Best Actress to Catherine Deneuve, Best Supporting Actress to Dominique Blanc) and Queen Margot in 1995 (Best Actress to Isabelle Adjani, Best Supporting Actress to Virna Lisi).

Three women have won the César Award for Best Supporting Actress after previously winning the César Award for Most Promising Actress:

  • Charlotte Gainsbourg (Most Promising Actress in 1986, Best Supporting Actress in 2000),
  • Julie Depardieu (Most Promising Actress in 2004, Best Supporting Actress in 2004 and 2008),
  • Cécile de France (Most Promising Actress in 2003, Best Supporting Actress in 2006).

Both Cécile de France and Julie Depardieu have won their two awards with a same role: Isabelle, an Erasmus student, in The Spanish Apartment (Most Promising Actress) and its sequel The Russian Dolls (Best Supporting Actress) for de France, and Jeanne-Marie in Little Lili (both awards) for Depardieu.

Therefore, Depardieu is the only individual to have won two acting César for the same performance. This achievement is no longer possible as the Académie has since modified nomination rules to ensure that no individual could be nominated in more than one acting category (Best Actor/Actress or Best Supporting Actor/Actress or Most Promising Actor/Actress) for the same film.

Three films has received both accolades: An Impudent Girl in 1986 (Best Supporting Actress to Bernadette Lafont, Most Promising Actress to Charlotte Gainsbourg), Life Is a Long Quiet River in 1989 (Best Supporting Actress to Hélène Vincent, Most Promising Actress to Catherine Jacob) and Little Lili in 2004 (both awards to Julie Depardieu).

Thirteen women have received nominations in the three competitive acting categories: Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress and Most Promising Actress. They are Emmanuelle Béart, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Dominique Blanc, Anne Brochet, Karin Viard, Sandrine Kiberlain, Emmanuelle Devos, Cécile de France, Marion Cotillard, Sylvie Testud, Emilie Dequenne, Sara Forestier and Adèle Haenel. So far, no actress has achieved to win the three awards.

To date, the most long-lived winner is Suzanne Flon, who died at 87, and the most short-lived is Valérie Benguigui, who died at 47. The oldest alive winner is Hélène Vincent, aged 75, and the earliest alive winner is Nicole Garcia (Le Cavaleur, 1980).

International presence

As the César Awards are centered on the French Cinema, the majority of recipients are French and performed in French language. However, the Best Supporting Actress César has been awarded five times to a non-French actress:

The Best Supporting Actress César has been awarded only once for a full foreign-language performance with Kristen Stewart's English-language performance. Nevertheless, Virna Lisi's and Carmen Maura's roles included some parts of Italian-language and Spanish-language, respectively.

International actresses who have received nominations are:

Other awards

Virna Lisi is the only actress to have won both the Best Supporting Actress César and the Best Actress Award of the Cannes Film Festival for her portrayal of Catherine de Médicis in Queen Margot.

Winners and nominees

Following the AATC's practice, the films below are listed by year of ceremony, which corresponds to the year following the film's year of release. For example, the César for Best Supporting Actress of 2010 was awarded on February 27, 2010 for a performance in a film released between January 1, 2009 and December 31, 2009.

Actresses are selected via a two-round vote: first round to choose the nominees, second round to designate the winner. All the members of the Académie, without regard to their branch, are eligible to vote on both rounds. Initially set to four, the number of nominees was expanded to five in 1984.

Winners are listed first in bold, followed by the other nominees in alphabetic order.


Year Winner and Nominees Film Original Title Role(s)
Marie-France PisierCousin CousineKarine
French ProvincialSouvenirs d'en FranceRégina
Andréa FerréolCookiesLes Galettes de Pont-AvenMadame Licquois
Isabelle HuppertAloïseYoung Aloïse
Christine PascalLet Joy Reign SupremeQue la fête commence...Emilie
Marie-France PisierBaroccoNelly
Anny DupereyAn Elephant Can Be Extremely DeceptiveUn Elephant ça trompe énormémentCharlotte
Brigitte FosseyThe Good and the BadLe Bon et les méchantsDominique Blanchot
Francine RacetteLumièreJulienne
Marie DuboisLa MenaceDominique Montlaur
Nelly BorgeaudThe Man Who Loved WomenL'Homme qui aimait les femmesDelphine Grezel
Geneviève FontanelHélène
Florence GiorgettiThe LacemakerLa DentellièreMarylène Torrent
Valérie MairesseRepéragesEsther
Stéphane AudranViolette NozièreGermaine Nozière
Arlette BonnardA Simple StoryUne Histoire simpleGabrielle
Éva DarlanAnna
Nelly BorgeaudLe SucreHilda Courtois


Year Winner and Nominees Film Original Title Role(s)
Nicole GarciaLe CavaleurMarie-France
Myriam BoyerSérie noireJeanne
Dominique LavanantCourage – Let's RunMathilda
Maria SchneiderMemoirs of a French WhoreLa DérobadeMaloup
Nathalie BayeEvery Man for Himself (a.k.a. Slow Motion)Sauve qui peut (la vie)Denise Rimbaud
Andréa FerréolThe Last MetroLe Dernier MétroArlette Guillaume
Claire MaurierA Bad SonUn mauvais filsMadeleine
Delphine SeyrigI Sent a Letter to My LoveChère inconnueYvette
Nathalie BayeStrange AffairUne étrange affaireNina Coline
Stéphane AudranCoup de torchonHuguette Cordier
Sabine HaudepinHotel AmericaHôtel des AmériquesElise Tisserand
Véronique SilverThe Woman Next DoorLa Femme d'à côtéMathilde Bauchard
Fanny CottençonL'Étoile du NordSylvie Baron
Stéphane AudranParadis pour tousEdith
Danielle DarrieuxUne chambre en villeMargot Langlois
Denise GreyLa Boum 2Poupette
Suzanne FlonOne Deadly SummerL'Eté meurtrierCognata
Victoria AbrilMoon in the GutterLa Lune dans le caniveauBella
Stéphane AudranDeadly CircuitMortelle RandonnéeGermaine
Sabine AzémaLife Is a Bed of RosesLa Vie est un romanElisabeth Rousseau
Agnès SoralSo Long, StoogeTchao PantinLola
Caroline CellierYear of the JellyfishL'Année des médusesClaude
Victoria AbrilL'AdditionPatty
Carole BouquetRive droite, rive gaucheBabée Senanques
Élizabeth BourgineLa Septième CibleLaura
Maruschka DetmersThe PirateLa PirateCarole
Bernadette LafontAn Impudent GirlL'EffrontéeLéone
AnémoneDeath in a French GardenPéril en la demeureEdwige Ledieu
Macha MérilVagabondSans Toit ni loiMadame Landier
Catherine FrotEscalier CBéatrice
Dominique LavanantThree Men and a CradleTrois Hommes et un couffinMadame Rapons
Emmanuelle BéartManon des SourcesManon
Clémentine CélariéBetty Blue37°2 le matinAnnie
Danielle DarrieuxScene of the CrimeLe Lieu du crimeThe Grandmother
Marie DuboisDescent Into HellDescente aux enfersLucette
Jeanne MoreauLe PaltoquetThe Bartender
Dominique LavanantAgent troubleCatherine "Karen" Dariller
Sylvie JolyThe MiracleLe MiraculéMadame Fox Terrier
Anna KarinaCayenne PalaceLola
Marie LaforêtFucking FernandLotte
Bernadette LafontMasksMasquesPatricia Marquet
Hélène VincentLife Is a Long Quiet RiverLa Vie est un long fleuve tranquilleMarielle Le Quesnoy
María CasaresThe ReaderLa LectriceThe widow of the General
Françoise FabianThree Seats for the 26thTrois places pour le 26Marie-Hélène
Dominique LavanantQuelques jours avec moiIrène Frontin
Marie TrintignantStory of WomenUne Affaire de femmesLucie


Year Winners and nominees English title Original title
Suzanne FlonLa Vouivre
Clémentine CélariéIndian NocturneNocturne indien
Sabine HaudepinForce majeure
Ludmila MikaëlWhite WeddingNoce blanche
Micheline PresleI Want to Go Home
Dominique BlancMilou in MayMilou en mai
Catherine JacobTatie Danielle
Odette LaureDaddy Nostalgie
Danièle LebrunUranus
Thérèse LiotardMy Father's GloryLa Gloire de mon père
My Mother's CastleLe Château de ma mère
Anne BrochetAll the Mornings of the WorldTous les matins du monde
Jane BirkinThe Beautiful TroublemakerLa Belle Noiseuse
Catherine JacobThank You LifeMerci la vie
Valérie LemercierL'Opération Corned-Beef
Hélène VincentI Don't KissJ'embrasse pas
Dominique BlancIndochine
Brigitte CatillonA Heart in WinterUn cœur en hiver
Michèle LaroqueThe CrisisLa Crise
Maria Pacôme
Zabou Breitman
Valérie LemercierThe VisitorsLes Visiteurs
Myriam Boyer1, 2, 3, SunUn, deux, trois, soleil
Judith HenryGerminal
Marie TrintignantLes Marmottes
Marthe VillalongaMy Favourite SeasonMa saison préférée
Virna LisiQueen MargotLa Reine Margot
Dominique BlancQueen MargotLa Reine Margot
Catherine JacobNeuf mois
Michèle MorettiWild ReedsLes Roseaux sauvages
Line RenaudI Can't SleepJ'ai pas sommeil
Annie GirardotLes Misérables
Jacqueline BissetThe CeremonyLa Cérémonie
Clotilde CourauÉlisa
Carmen MauraHappiness Is in the FieldLe Bonheur est dans le pré
Claire NadeauNelly and Mr. ArnaudNelly & Monsieur Arnaud
Catherine FrotFamily ResemblancesUn air de famille
Valeria Bruni TedeschiMy ManMon homme
Agnès JaouiFamily ResemblancesUn air de famille
Sandrine KiberlainA Self Made HeroUn héros très discret
Michèle LaroquePédale douce
Agnès JaouiSame Old SongOn connaît la chanson
Pascale RobertsMarius and JeannetteMarius et Jeannette
Mathilde SeignerDry CleaningNettoyage à sec
Marie TrintignantThe CousinLe Cousin
Karin ViardHikersLes Randonneurs
Dominique BlancThose Who Love Me Can Take the TrainCeux qui m'aiment prendront le train
Arielle DombasleBoredomL'Ennui
Catherine FrotThe Dinner GameLe Dîner de Cons
Emmanuelle SeignerPlace Vendôme


Year Winner and nominees English title Original title
Charlotte GainsbourgSeason's BeatingsLa bûche
Catherine MouchetMy Little BusinessMa petite entreprise
Bulle OgierVenus Beauty InstituteVénus beauté (institut)
Line RenaudBeautiful MotherBelle maman
Mathilde SeignerVenus Beauty InstituteVénus beauté (institut)
Anne AlvaroThe Taste of OthersLe Goût des autres
Jeanne BalibarTomorrow's Another DayÇa ira mieux demain
Agnès JaouiThe Taste of OthersLe Goût des autres
Mathilde SeignerHarry, He's Here to HelpHarry, un ami qui vous veut du bien
Florence ThomassinA Question of TasteUne affaire de goût
Annie GirardotThe Piano TeacherLa Pianiste
Nicole GarciaBetty Fisher and Other StoriesBetty Fisher et autres histoires
Noémie LvovskyMy Wife Is an ActressMa femme est une actrice
Isabelle NantyAmélieLe Fabuleux Destin d'Amélie Poulain
Line RenaudChaos
Karin ViardSummer ThingsEmbrassez qui vous voudrez
Dominique BlancSpecial DeliveryC'est le bouquet!
Danielle Darrieux8 Women8 femmes
Emmanuelle DevosThe AdversaryL'adversaire
Judith GodrècheThe Spanish Apartment (a.k.a. Pot Luck)L'Auberge espagnole
Julie DepardieuLittle LiliLa Petite Lili
Géraldine PailhasThe Cost of LivingLe Coût de la vie
Judith GodrècheFrance Boutique
Isabelle NantyNot on the LipsPas sur la bouche
Ludivine SagnierSwimming Pool
Marion CotillardA Very Long EngagementUn long dimanche de fiançailles
Ariane AscarideA Common ThreadBrodeuses
Mylène DemongeotDepartment 3636 Quai des Orfèvres
Julie DepardieuPodium
Émilie DequenneThe LightL'Équipier
Cécile de FranceThe Russian DollsLes Poupées russes
Catherine DeneuvePalais royal!
Noémie LvovskyBackstage
Charlotte RamplingLemming
Kelly ReillyThe Russian DollsLes Poupées russes
Valérie LemercierOrchestra SeatsFauteuils d'orchestre
Christine CittiWhen I Was a Singer (a.k.a. The Singer)Quand j'étais chanteur
DaniOrchestra Seats (a.k.a. Avenue Montaigne)Fauteuils d'orchestre
Mylène DemongeotFrench CaliforniaLa Californie
Bernadette LafontI DoPrête-moi ta main
Julie DepardieuA SecretUn secret
Noémie LvovskyActrices
Bulle OgierLet's DanceFaut que ça danse!
Ludivine SagnierA SecretUn secret
Sylvie TestudLa Vie en RoseLa môme
Elsa ZylbersteinI've Loved You So LongIl y a longtemps que je t'aime
Jeanne BalibarSagan
Anne ConsignyA Christmas TaleUn conte de Noël
Édith ScobSummer HoursL'Heure d'été
Karin ViardParis


Year Winner and nominees English title Original title
Emmanuelle DevosIn the BeginningÀ l'origine
Aure AtikaMiss ChambonMademoiselle Chambon
Anne ConsignyRapt
Audrey DanaWelcome
Noémie LvovskyThe French KissersLes Beaux Gosses
Anne AlvaroThe Clink of IceLe Bruit des glacons
Valérie BonnetonLittle White Lies Les Petits Mouchoirs
Laetitia CastaGainsbourg: A Heroic LifeGainsbourg (Vie héroïque)
Julie FerrierHeartbreaker L'Arnacœur
Karin ViardPotiche Potiche
Carmen MauraThe Women on the 6th FloorLes Femmes du 6ème étage
Zabou BreitmanThe MinisterL'Exercice de l'État
Anne Le NyIntouchables
Noémie LvovskyHouse of PleasuresL'Apollonide: Souvenirs de la maison close
Karole RocherPolisse
Valérie BenguiguiWhat's in a Name?Le Prenom
Judith ChemlaCamille RewindsCamille redouble
Yolande Moreau
Isabelle HuppertAmour
Édith ScobHoly Motors
Adèle HaenelSuzanne
Marisa BoriniA Castle in ItalyUn château en Italie
Françoise FabianMe, Myself and MumLes Garçons et Guillaume, à table!
Julie GayetThe French MinisterQuai d'Orsay
Géraldine PailhasYoung & BeautifulJeune & Jolie
Kristen StewartClouds of Sils MariaSils Maria
Marianne DenicourtHippocratesHippocrate
Claude GensacLulu in the NudeLulu femme nue
Izïa HigelinSamba
Charlotte Le BonYves Saint Laurent
Sidse Babett KnudsenCourtedL'Hermine
Sara ForestierStanding TallLa Tête haute
Agnès JaouiThe Sweet EscapeComme un avion
Noémie LvovskySummertimeLa Belle Saison
Karin Viard21 Nights with Pattie21 nuits avec Pattie
Déborah LukumuenaDivines
Nathalie BayeIt's Only the End of the WorldJuste la fin du monde
Valeria Bruni TedeschiSlack BayMa Loute
Anne ConsignyElle
Mélanie ThierryThe DancerLa Danseuse
Sara GiraudeauBloody MilkPetit Paysan
Laure CalamyAva
Anaïs DemoustierThe House by the SeaLa Villa
Adèle HaenelBPM (Beats per Minute)120 battements par minute
Mélanie ThierrySee You Up ThereAu Revoir là-haut
Karin ViardLittle TicklesLes Chatouilles
Isabelle AdjaniThe World Is YoursLe monde est à toi
Leïla BekhtiSink or SwimLe Grand Bain
Virginie EfiraSink or SwimLe Grand Bain
Audrey TautouThe Trouble with YouEn liberté !

Multiple wins and nominations

See also

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