|Date of Birth
||22 March 1949
|Place of Birth
||Saumur, Maine-et-Loire, France
Fanny Ardant was born on March 22, 1949 in Saumur, Maine-et-Loire, France. The daughter of a cavalry officer in the French army, Fanny later moved to Monaco with her family where she grew up. Her father was a friend of the Royal household who was also a governor at the palace. She often visited the palace and made acquaintance with Princess Grace. At the age of 17, Fanny moved to Aix-en-Provence where she attended university majoring in political science. She later studied drama and made her stage début in Corneille's Polyeucte in 1974. Her first big break came in 1979 when she landed a role on the TV drama Les Dames de la côte (The Ladies of the Coast). Her appearance on the series caught the attention of the celebrated director François Truffaut, who offered her a role in his next film La Femme d'à côté (The Woman Next Door) in 1981, starring opposite Gérard Depardieu. It was a role that changed her life both professionally and personally. Her performance in the film brought her international recognition and her first César nomination for best actress in 1982. On the personal front, she became Truffaut's companion and remained with him until his death in 1984. They had a daughter, Joséphine, who was born the previous year. Fanny starred in Truffaut's last film Vivement dimanche! (Confidentially Yours), and received her second César nomination for best actress. Throughout the 80's and 90's, Fanny continued to give strong performances, cementing her reputation with serious and dramatic roles. In 1994, she teamed up once again with Gérard Depardieu in Le Colonel Chabert, playing the role of a complex widow. But some of her most memorable performances showcased her comedic talent, such as Pédale douce in 1996, which won her that year's César Award for Best Actress. In that same year, Fanny also appeared in the highly acclaimed costume drama Ridicule (Oscar-nominated Best Foreign Film), as the delightfully acidic Madame de Blayac, lending her powerful mix of well-bred beauty and sexy sophistication to the role. Over the years, Fanny has matured into a captivating figure in French cinema. Her sophistication, elegance and acting versatility have made her one of France's most admired and enduring actresses. Her popularity in France even inspired French comedian/singer Vincent Delerm to write a song, Fanny Ardant et moi, dedicated to her. Although most of her work is on film, Fanny has been equally successful on stage. She continues to participate in theatrical productions throughout her career, appearing in Roman Polanski's much praised stage adaptation of Master Class in 1997, portraying opera singer Maria Callas. Fluent in French, English, Italian and Spanish, Fanny occasionally ventured outside of French cinema and worked in such productions as La Famiglia (The Family) and Le Cena for Italian director Ettore Scola, and the Italian version of Chekov's Three Sisters (Paura e amore). She was also seen in a small supporting role in the 1995 Sydney Pollack's film Sabrina. And in 1998, she appeared in the Oscar-nominated drama Elizabeth, in which her presence highlighted the small but important role of the ruthless and deliciously flirtatious Mary of Guise. In 2002, she took on the role of the sexy, mischievous, yet complex sister-in-law of Catherine Deneuve in François Ozon's hit musical comedy/murder mystery, 8 femmes (8 Women), a role which won her a new wave of international fan following. Fanny Ardant lives in Paris, France, and has three daughters, Loumir, Joséphine and Baladine.