Sandrine Bonnaire

Sandrine Bonnaire ([sɑ̃.dʁin bɔ.nɛʁ]; born 31 May 1967) is a French actress, film director and screenwriter who has appeared in more than 40 films. She won the César Award for Most Promising Actress for À nos amours (1983), the César Award for Best Actress for Vagabond (1985) and the Volpi Cup for Best Actress for La Cérémonie (1995). Her other films include Under the Sun of Satan (1987), Monsieur Hire (1989), East/West (1999) and The Final Lesson (2015).

Sandrine Bonnaire
Sandrine Bonnaire as president of the
2012 Deauville American Film Festival
Born (1967-05-31) 31 May 1967
Gannat, Allier, France
OccupationActress, Film director, Screenwriter
Years active1982–present
Guillaume Laurant
(m. 2003)
Partner(s)William Hurt (1992–1997)

Life and career

Bonnaire was born in the town of Gannat, Allier, in the Auvergne region. She was born into a working-class family, the seventh of eleven children. Her acting career began in 1983, when she starred in the Maurice Pialat film À nos amours at age 16. She played a girl from Paris beginning her sexual awakening. In 1984 she received the César Award for Most Promising Actress.

Her international breakthrough came in 1985 when she played the main character in Sans toit ni loi (Vagabond), directed by Agnès Varda, for which she won her second César Award. She portrays a vagrant who fails both physically and morally. The film premiered at the 42nd Venice International Film Festival, where it won the Golden Lion. The jury deemed Bonnaire's performance among the best of the year, but decided against awarding her the Volpi Cup for Best Actress prize because both the actresses they judged to have given the best performances were in films that won major awards.[1]

Bonnaire worked again with Pialat on Sous le soleil de Satan (Under the Sun of Satan) which won the Palme d'Or at the 1987 Cannes Film Festival. Monsieur Hire, directed by Patrice Leconte, followed in 1989, along with further work with directors Jacques Doillon and Claude Sautet.

In 1995 Bonnaire starred as an apparently simple maid in Claude Chabrol's widely acclaimed thriller La Cérémonie. The film and its stars won awards internationally, including Best Actress at the 52nd Venice Film Festival for both Bonnaire and co-star Isabelle Huppert.

In 2004 Bonnaire starred in another Leconte film, Intimate Strangers, which was an arthouse box-office hit in the United States.[2]

In 2017 Bonnaire starred in Gaël Morel's film about reverse immigration, Prendre le large.[3] At the 8th Magritte Awards she received an Honorary Magritte Award from the Académie André Delvaux.[4]

Personal life

Bonnaire has a daughter, Jeanne, from a relationship with actor William Hurt, whom she met in 1991 during filming of the Albert Camus novel La Peste (The Plague). They acted together in Secrets Shared with a Stranger (1994). Since March 2003 she has been married to actor and screenwriter Guillaume Laurant, with whom she has a second daughter, Adèle.

Selected filmography

As actress

Year Title Role Director
1982 Les sous-doués en vacances Extra (Uncredited) Claude Zidi
1983 À nos amours Suzanne Maurice Pialat
1984 Tir à vue[5] ("Fire on Sight"[6]) Marilyn Marc Angelo
1985 Blanche et Marie[7] Marie Jacques Renard
Le meilleur de la vie[8] ("A better Life"[9]) Veronique Renaud Victor
Police Lydie Maurice Pialat
Sans toit ni loi ("Vagabond") Mona Bergeron Agnès Varda
1986 La Puritaine[10][11] ("The Prude"[12]) Manon Jacques Doillon
1987 Sous le soleil de Satan Mouchette Maurice Pialat
Jaune revolver[13][14] Angèle[15] Olivier Langlois
Les Innocents Jeanne André Téchiné
1988 Quelques jours avec moi ("A Few Days With Me"[16]) Francine Claude Sautet
Peaux de vaches Annie Patricia Mazuy
1989 Monsieur Hire Alice Patrice Leconte
1990 La Captive du désert the captive Raymond Depardon
Verso sera (a.k.a. Dans la soirée) Stella Francesca Archibugi
1991 Le ciel de Paris ("The Sky Above Paris"[17]) Suzanne Michel Béna
La Peste ("The Plague"[18]) Martine Luis Puenzo
1992 Prague Elena Ian Sellar
1994 Joan the Maiden, Part 1: The Battles and Joan the Maiden, Part 2: The Prisons Joan of Arc Jacques Rivette
1995 Les Cent et une Nuits de Simon Cinéma the female vagabond Agnès Varda
La Cérémonie Sophie Claude Chabrol
1996 Never Ever Katherine Charles Finch
1997 Die Schuld der Liebe[19][20] ("Debt of Love"[21]) Monika Andreas Gruber
1998 Secret défense Sylvie Jacques Rivette
1998 Stolen Life Olga Yves Angelo
1999 Au cœur du mensonge Vivianne Claude Chabrol
Est-Ouest Marie Régis Wargnier
2001 Mademoiselle[22] Claire Philippe Lioret
C'est la vie[23] Suzanne Jean-Pierre Améris
2002 Femme fatale As herself Brian De Palma
2003 Resistance Lucette Todd Komarnicki
2004 Confidences trop intimes Anna Patrice Leconte
Le Cou de la girafe ("The Giraffe’s Neck"[24]) Hélène Safy Nebbou
L'Équipier Mabé Philippe Lioret
2006 Je crois que je l'aime ("Could This Be Love?"[25]) Elsa Pierre Jolivet
Demandez la permission aux enfants[26] Marie Eric Civanyan
2007 Un Coeur Simple[27] ("Simple Heart"[28]) Félicité Marion Laine
2008 L'Empreinte de l'ange Claire Safy Nebbou
2009 Joueuse Hélène Caroline Bottaro
2013 Adieu Paris Françoise Dupret Franziska Buch
2014 Salaud, on t'aime Nathalie Béranger Claude Lelouch
Soul of a Spy Jacqueline Vladimir Bortko
Rouge sang (TV movie) Jacqueline Xavier Durringer
2015 The Final Lesson Diane Pascale Pouzadoux
2016 Heaven Will Wait
2017 Capitaine Marleau Jeanne Dewaere Josée Dayan
2017 A Season in France
2017 Catch the Wind

As director/screenwriter

Year Title Cast Notes
2007 Elle s'appelle Sabine (Her Name is Sabine) Sabine Bonnaire Documentary
Cannes Film Festival - Directors' Fortnight or Critics' Week
French Syndicate of Cinema Critics - Best First Film
Globe de Cristal for Best Documentary
Nominated - Cannes Film Festival - Golden Camera
Nominated - Chicago International Film Festival - Best Documentary
Nominated - César Award for Best Documentary Film
2011 J'enrage de son absence[29] William Hurt, Alexandra Lamy feature film
2016 Marianne Faithfull - Fleur d'âme Marianne Faithfull, Sandrine Bonnaire documentary film

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Film Result
1984 César Award Most Promising Actress À nos amours Won
1986 César Award Best Actress Sans toit ni loi Won
1988 César Award Best Actress Sous le soleil de Satan Nominated
1990 César Award Best Actress Monsieur Hire Nominated
1995 César Award Best Actress Joan the Maiden Nominated
Volpi Cup (Venice Film Festival) Best Actress La Cérémonie Won
1996 César Award Best Actress La Cérémonie Nominated
2000 César Award Best Actress Est-Ouest Nominated


  1. "Venice Festival awards top prize to Varda film". New York Times. 7 September 1985.
  2. At A Popular Annual Showcase in New York, Considering French Cinema's Identity Crisis
  3. Cinéma : Sandrine Bonnaire, digne et fière dans "Prendre le large", France TV Info, November 05, 2017
  4. Meskens, Joëlle (2 February 2018). "Sandrine Bonnaire mise à l'honneur aux Magritte: «Le cinéma, c'est ma façon d'être citoyenne»". Le Soir (in French). Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  5. "Tir a Vue (1984)". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  6. "Aka: Fire on Sight". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  7. "Blanche et Marie". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  8. "Le Meilleur De La Vie". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  9. "Aka: A Better Life". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  10. "La Puritaine". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  11. "La Puritaine". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  12. "Aka: The Prude". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  13. "Jaune revolver". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  14. "Jaune revolver". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  15. "La Puritaine". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  16. "Aka: A Few Days with Me". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  17. "Aka: The Sky Above Paris". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  18. "Aka: The Plague". Archived from the original on 2013-01-23. Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  19. "Die Schuld der Liebe". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  20. "Die Schuld der Liebe". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  21. "Aka: Debt of Love". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  22. "Mademoiselle (2001)". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  23. "C'est la vie (2001)". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  24. "Aka: The Giraffe's Neck". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  25. "Could This Be Love?". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  26. "Demandez la permission aux enfants". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  27. "Un coeur simple (2008)". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  28. "Simple Heart (2008)". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
  29. "J'enrage de son absence". Retrieved 2012-09-22.
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