"Larry King Live"
Welcome back to Larry King Live.
When it was released in 1967, the French film, "Belle de Jour",
was considered so risque and shocking, it was taken out of distribution
in the United States for more than two decades. It is now being re-released
and presented by Martin Scorsese. Our guest tonight is enduring as this
classic film, the ever-lovely Catherine Deneuve. I thank you very much
for coming. Were you surprised that they're bringing this movie back ?
Yes, I was very surprised and very pleased, you know, to know that, especially
an American company would develop something to have distribution of French
films. I think it's a good thing.
Do you know Mr. Scorsese ?
I don't know him personally, no.
Have not met him ?
Not yet, no.
You're here now. I imagine you're
going to meet him.
Yeah, very soon.
Were you surprised a little
that a director of that eminence would get in front to bring back a movie
that he had no interest in, other than a fan ?
I think he has an interest, you know, because I saw him recently on French
television for the hundred years of films, and he was presenting all the
American cinema. And the choice he had made, you know, about American
films, and the way he talked about it, I was not so surprised, because-
it reminded me very much of Francois Truffaut. You know, his passion is
films more than life. It looks like that to me.
When you were making "Belle
de Jour", did you know that this was a roll-the-dice, risky film
It was working with Buñuel. And that meant a lot to me, even at
Because you were like 23, 24
Yeah. And I didn't know it was risky. You know, as a person, I didn't
mind so much about that. It's the old thing, you know, the subject of
the film, because it's more an erotic film than anything. And I suppose
also the- it's very difficult, I think, for people to say, "This
film is not going to be released or shown", because the film is more
erotic than really shocking on the images, you know. It says underneath-
-more than what it shows, you know. It's a very-
By today's standards, it's tame,
isn't it ?
I don't think so. I mean, if you think of what you can show on the screen,
I agree. But what the film says about sex, you know, and fantasies, is
still, to me, very, very strong. And the fact it's done by Buñuel,
and there is no... no possibility to think that he did the film for other
reasons than to really talk about something without talking about it,
you know, about sex and fantasies... I mean... what I mean is it's classic...
I think it's still [unintelligible] today for women and men. It has to
do with... it's out of time.
It's the bored housewife, prostitution.
She's not bored. I think she's frustrated, maybe, more than bored, you
Her husband is not very attentive
Her husband is attentive. He's very good-looking. He's living... making,
you know, a very good living.
And she's in love with him. But, you know, it's like something intimate
between them that she is not satisfied. But I don't think she's bored.
Was this difficult to play ?
Because you have to say more than you have to show without showing, so
it takes more of... it takes more of yourself, in a way. And also, because
some scenes, you know, were difficult to do. And even Bunuel didn't want
to show, you know, much in the film. And that's why you had to avoid,
you know, so many things. It was quite- quite difficult, you know. And,
despite what you could [unintelligible] on the set, I think that, when
you have to do love scenes, you know, even the scenes you see today, I
always find the actors and the crew much more tense and shy than what
you would think. Nobody is laughing around and sort of walking around,
you know, and eating food. It's not like that when you do those scenes.
It's also been said that it's
hard to get turned on, really turned on, doing love scenes, because of
all the crew around.
Yeah, that's what I would think. That's my feeling about it. But still,
I'm very surprised to see...
No, but almost every year, an actor or an actress falling in love with
his partner. But I'm not sure it's because of the love scene, actually.
Maybe it's just the relation...
That did not happen to you?
You paused a second. Ever close
No, really, it didn't happen to me. But maybe, you know, what can happen
is the relation during the shooting, more than the love scene is maybe
You're in a film with Malkovich,
right ? Didn't you do a film with John...
Yeah, just recently.
That was "The Convent",
When is that coming out ?
The film is going to be released in Europe in September, but I don't know
here when it will come. You know how much- how much time it takes for
French films to come to... it will be at the New York Film Festival.
It's a French film ?
No, it's a Portuguese film. Manuel De Oliveira is Portuguese. And everyone
spoke in his own language, you know. He was speaking English to John Malkovich,
but the film was shot in English, French, and Portuguese. All actors were
speaking their language, and there are subtitles sometimes.
How did you like working with
Very much, but we had not that many scenes together, in a way.
Oh, you're not...
I'm his wife, but there I'm bored. That's a film where, you know, I play
a wife that is bored. And she's also jealous of her husband's activity.
How would you describe...
If I'd describe...
How would you describe the French
film ? The French is [sic] unique filmmakers, and they have given us some
of the great films ever made. What is- how would we, if possible, describe
the French school ?
I think... to me, a major difference between American films and French
film is that we... it talks much more in French films about what we should
do and what we are going to do. When I think in American films, people
talk about what they are doing, you know. There is much more action in
American films than in French films, where it's more about reflection
More movement in American films
Yes, much more. Yes. But that's not the only thing. I think also we have
maybe sometimes more freedom, you know, to be able to do a reasonable
sized film, you know, that gives more freedom to the director. If the
films are not too big, not too expensive, you have much more freedom.
Also, with a small crew, you know, it's easier to do very difficult things.
Big films are, I'm sure, for directors sometimes, a big weight.
We're going to take a break. And when we come back
with Catherine Deneuve, we'll take your phone calls. "Belle de Jour"
first came out in 1967. It is considered a classic. It is being re-released
by Miramax. It's going to open in New York and Los Angeles next Wednesday,
and nationwide right after the Fourth of July. Here, by the way, as we
break, is a scene from "Belle de Jour".
[Clip from " Belle de Jour
Our guest is Catherine Deneuve. They're going to
re-release "Belle de Jour". She made her film debut at age 13.
She starred in Roman Polanski's "Repulsion", in "Indochine",
in "The Hunger". And "Belle de Jour" is being re-released
by Miramax, which bought the rights. That's a Disney company, by the way,
one of 1,700 Disney companies. Miramax, a very adventuresome company.
The film will be presented by Martin Scorsese. They asked him to present
it because he is a major advocate of this as one of the great movies of
all-time. We'll take your calls for Catherine Deneuve. Gautier, Mississippi.
[Gautier, Mississippi] Good
[Gautier, Mississippi] Ms. Deneuve,
can you please tell me why I can no longer buy your perfume line here
in the United States ? It is the best.
That's a difficult answer because I am not responsible for it. I am not
responsible for the perfume not to exist any longer. And I agree with
you. I still have maybe one bottle, but no more.
So it's not anywhere ? It's
No, no, no.
To Beijing, China. Hello.
[Beijing, China] Yes, Ms. Deneuve.
I met you when you launched your fragrance in Los Angeles. And I have
seen all of your films personally. And I have been a long-time fan. And
my question is, what is your personal favorite film that you have starred
I think that "Umbrellas of Cherbourg" was a major film for me
because I was very young, and it has been a very important and very successful
film. And also, great meeting between a role and myself. So I suppose
it was very... I had a very strong relation with the director, Jacques
Demy. And I would say that was a major thing to me.
Michel Legrand's music, right
Not bad, either.
Not bad, either. That was really part of the film.
What is life like for you these
days ? You still live in France ?
Yes, I live in Paris.
You've always lived in France
Born in... you were born when
the Germans occupied Paris.
The end. I don't remember much, you know.
But still live there ?
Yes, I still live there.
Still making films a lot ?
Not a lot. I try not to do too much, because in France, we have a lot
of films, you know, now on screen, [unintelligible] on television. And
I think you want people to go on screen, you have not to be not too much
on television with films.
Lake Oswego, Oregon [sic]. Hello.
[Lake Oswego, Oregon] Yes, hi,
[Lake Oswego, Oregon] I was
curious how your working relationship was with Roman Polanski in the very
interesting film "Repulsion".
It's someone, you know, that I see sometimes, because Roman Polanski is
not living any longer in the States and is living in Paris. So, I see
him once in a while, and I meet him to screenings, you know. It's someone
I admire very much. And I really felt very sorry for what happened to
him. I think it was something very, very unfair, you know, really very
unfair. And I like- you know, I like his work. But as a person, I think
he's a very sensitive man, and he was really very hurt by what happened.
I think he had too much for one man in one life.
How good a director ?
Very good director. To me, he's a very good director. And he loves actors,
because he was an actor before he was a director.
A pretty good actor, too ?
I know it's Alabama, but I didn't... Auburn, Alabama
with Catherine Deneuve. Hello.
[Auburn, Alabama] Hi, yes, I
wanted to say, first of all, that you were once described as the most
beautiful woman in the world, and I think that's still true. Gerard Depardieu
was quoted once as saying that you are the man that he would love to be.
And I wanted to know what you thought of that, and how you would describe
yourself. What did he mean by that ?
I think he meant... he's a very... as a lot of actors, actually, you know,
he's a very feminine actor. And, don't misunderstand me from feminine,
you know. What I mean feminine, I think there is a sensibility in one
man, anyway, but in one actor, shown a little more of his femininity.
And I think he thinks I'm a very sort of strong, direct, and man-like
woman, you know. Like, not too much fuss, not too much...
So what did he mean in saying
Well, if he had to be a girl, I think he would have liked to be the type
of girl like me, you know.
Weak and strong.
Weak and strong. We'll be back with our remaining
moments with Catherine Deneuve. "Belle de Jour", it's coming
to L.A. and New York next week, and then wide in July. Don't go away.
Luis Buñuel, by the way,
was the director of "Belle de Jour", someone you admire.
Back to the calls. San Antonio for Catherine Deneuve.
[San Antonio, Texas] I thought
that your movie, "Mayerling", was one of the better movies that
I had ever seen. Did you think so ? And how did you like working with
Omar Sharif ? And why have you never made another movie with him ?
So three questions in one ?
Yes, it's a film I like very much because it's a very romantic film. And
it's true that it's very rare people mention it to me, sometimes through
letters, but not really through other ways, you know. And I didn't work
with Omar Sharif because we never had a chance to do a film after that
together. But I like Omar Sharif. He's living in Paris. And he's a very
nice man. He did a film with my sister a long time ago.
He's a wonderful actor, too.
He has a grace about him.
Yeah. Very warm. And he likes very much women.
You like that, right, men who
like women ?
Yeah, like I like women to like women, and I like men to like women, as
well. Yes. It's something nice to feel. There is no seduction about it.
It's just a man that is really, you know, ready to like a woman.
Coquimbo, Chile. Hello.
[Coquimbo, Chile] Hello, Ms.
[Coquimbo, Chile] Let me tell
you, first of all, that you are one of my favorite actresses.
Well, I'm glad I'm there, then.
[Coquimbo, Chile] And you still
are very beautiful.
She sure is.
[Coquimbo, Chile] My question
is the following. Have you ever thought of making a film by a Latin American
To tell you the truth, yes, I have thought about it. And I did some films
in America with American directors, and even in Europe. But it's not in
my power, you know, to decide if I'm going to do an American film.
Have you been to Chile ? Have
you been to South America ?
I've been to South America, but I haven't been to Chile yet.
Any director you'd really love
to work with ? I guess Scorsese would be...
Yes, of course. But it's embarrassing to say that down. I am going to
meet him in New York, and it seems very opportunist. But it's true. He's
someone I admire very much, yes. He is one of the directors. You know
what I like about him, as I said before, it's his passion. But it's also
the fact that he knows and appreciates very much European films. He knows
very much about European films.
He's a student of film, yeah.
Thank you, Catherine.
Great seeing you again.