Kate Hardy says French men are just gorgeous…
I’m possibly a little biased here as I’m just back from Paris, where I found the French people absolutely charming. (Having not spoken French for 20 years or so, I was a tad rusty, but my confidence came back very quickly because everyone was so nice and encouraging – nothing like the South of France, where they’ll claim they can’t understand a word you’re saying if you say ‘la’ when you mean ‘le’, cough.) The artist who drew my daughter’s portrait in Montmartre, the lovely man who came to my rescue in the Louvre when I came across the only unhelpful person in Paris while trying to find a particular painting, the waiters and our concierge and even the staff in the Metro station – they were all very kind and very sweet.
And so I’m being a little self-indulgent – my Male on Monday slot is about gorgeous Frenchmen!
When I was small, French men were the height of sophistication. I can remember my mum sighing over Sacha Distel (left).
In my early twenties, I discovered Gerard Depardieu – first in The Return of Martin Guerre, and then in Cyrano de Bergerac. He’s been described as joli-laid (i.e. unconventionally attractive), but who could fail to fall in love with a character with such wit, such eloquence? (Yes, Vincent Perez, who plays Christian, was very pretty; but Depardieu stole the show.) And then there’s Green Card. The bit where he plays the piano to get Andie McDowell her trees is the bit where a lot of women fell in love with him.
And then there’s Mathieu Kassovitz, probably best-known outside France for his role as Nino Quincampoix in Amélie. (He's also a writer and director. Gorgeous and clever is a fabulous combination, in my book.)
And, more recently, Gilles Marini – both in his Sex and the City role, and his fabulous dancing in Dancing with the Stars.
Do you have a favourite French actor? Come and tell us about him and your favourite French film.
In the UK, you can still get the second of Kate’s Modern Heat French duo, Champagne with a Celebrity, from Mills & Boon’s website; the first, Red Wine and Her Sexy Ex, is out in December in the US and Australia. You can find out more about these books, and Kate, on her website (http://www.katehardy.com/) and her blog (http://katehardy.blogspot.com/)