Beauty and the Bistro

Breaking brioche with a French film starlet

As we wait, she tells me about her fondness for American drama -- she wrote French adaptations of plays by Lanford Wilson and Robert Harling, and performed in Paris in a Neil Simon play: "I Want to Be on Pictures, I think, right?" I Ought to Be in Pictures, right. She tells me about her earlier film career, and about working with such French-film heavyweights as Gérard Depardieu, Thierry Lhermitte and Daniel Auteuil in The Closet. She admits to her preference for film acting over the theater: "On stage you always have to project a little bit, and on the set you are read by the camera, and you just have to think, you know, and to be."

Then, as the exquisite little cylinders of cheesecake ringed with berries are placed before us, Laroque at last sheepishly tells me the story of the accident that "scarred" her. She had just completed a performance, in Paris, of a two-character play called They Used to Love Each Other. "It was my birthday," says Laroque. "And all the audience had sung 'Happy Birthday Michèle,' you know, one thousand persons, and when I went out, at the end of the performance, there are three big letters in wood, very big, F-I-N, which means 'The End,' and I bumped myself in the dark, on the F, so it was a knockout. It was terrible, I went to the hospital, I had stitches."

So, I ask, while she was unconscious, did she have a vision that she should have pursued a career in economics?

Michéle Laroque
M.V. Moorhead
Michéle Laroque

"No," she says confidently. "I wouldn't have that, I promise you."

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