On the leather armchair at the entrance of the production Fish Films, in the tenth arrondissement of Paris, Céleste Brunnquell only half sat down, as if about to leave. The elusive but deep gaze, the mischievous smile, the slightly rushed speech: the actress looks like Camille, the character she plays in the series In Therapy (1). In the first episode dedicated to her, this flayed teenager also finds herself stuck on a sofa, that of her therapist played by Frédéric Pierrot, from whom she does everything to escape. Session after session, at the same pace as the other patients (Mélanie Thierry, Reda Kateb or even Clémence Poésy), the cheeky young woman finally lets herself be tamed.
Just over a year ago, her first screen appearance in The Dazzled, the heartbreaking first film of Sarah Succo, had already given her the opportunity to play the young rebel: she played a twelve-year-old elder at war against parents blinded by faith, and was convincing, in the scenes of violent arguments as in the silent sequences, with a disconcerting naturalness. “I must have a problematic teenage physique, jokes the actress with blue eyes framed by a thick blonde hair giving her rather an angelic air. But I will grow up, so I don’t care! “.
From the top of her 18 years, she makes sure to keep her character at a distance. ” VS‘is the actor who must dominate the role, not the other way around ”, she launches, half laughing, unconvinced by the motto she has just improvised. Behind the laughter that punctuates some of her sentences, she still hides a slight embarrassment in the face of the interview exercise. “When things are close to my heart, I can no longer express myself”, she confides.
The taste of the game
Whenever she talks about the theater, however, Céleste Brunnquell has easy speaking and calm features. When she is spotted by a casting director in 2018, the high school student, then enrolled in first literary, follows the courses of Atelier Theater. The boards enchant him from the CM2 class. “The depth of the roles, the collective, the directing work and the relationship with the public: I like everything! “.
The actress, whose mere presence gives off something theatrical, regained some of this energy during her last shoot. “When there is a unique setting and long monologues to be learned by heart, everything is played out in the work of tone and nuances, as in the theater! “, she explains.
In the space of two years, after which she also obtained her baccalaureate, her acting earned her two shootings, a César nomination and dozens of press articles describing her as “Revelation”. But towards a horizon that the health crisis makes ever more vague, Céleste likes to navigate on sight. After having considered integrating the free class of Cours Florent, she began a license in Art History then dropped out, before enrolling at the National Theater of Brittany. “With me, it’s always ‘we’ll see’! “, exclaims the young actress.
We could diagnose, in her, a kind of artistic bulimia. Céleste Brunnquell nourishes a passion for museums and exhibitions, devours the novels of Annie Ernaux, assiduously draws portraits with fine black felt, “Like Cocteau! “, and fantasy about the role of the “Sphynx” of the Hellish machine … de Cocteau, again. Raised in the capital by parents who passed on their passion for cinema to her very early on, she continues to perfect her culture with her big sister. She has always been fascinated by the musical films of Jacques Demy: “It’s so generous! “, she blurted out, childish stars in her eyes.
The young actress admires the multi-hat personalities, the handymen and women, the free beings she would like to be. On the plateau of DazzledNo sooner had she finished shooting her sequence than she was helping the production, handling the camera, sticking tape on the floor. “I wanted to be everywhere”, she said with childish spontaneity. Her boundless curiosity may one day push her to pass to the other side of the camera.
His inspiration. Eric Rohmer’s cinema
“I am very sensitive to the cinema of Eric Rohmer, says Céleste Brunnquell. In his films, I like both the simple and naturalistic side, since they often look like documentaries filmed with little means, but also the very talkative aspect with characters who carry their voices to say out loud what ‘they think, unnaturally and with exaggerated diction. I’m thinking in particular of the “Summer Tales”, where the actors’ dialogues have to cover the noise of “real people” who are on the beach next to them. He’s one of my favorite directors and I find his cinema, which is a bit like the theater, is very comforting, especially when you feel alone. I’ve always identified a bit with his characters because I feel like they form my own thoughts. “