Béatrice Dalle is the ultimate femme fatale

If you had to choose one adjective which least suited Béatrice Dalle, you might do worse than “demure”. The actress, who celebrated her 50th birthday recently, may have become an object of desire to rival Bardot or Monroe, but her behaviour has, on occasions, been more reminiscent of a female Oliver Reed (a remarkable achievement, given that Dalle is not a drinker). The woman who has been described as “a walking grenade,” a “one-woman Vietnam”, “the patron saint of the abyss” and “Joan of Arc: the suicide bomber version” has agreed to meet me in the small village of Grignan, just outside Montélimar, where she is playing the lead in Lucrèce Borgia. Given that, in this role, she only kills seven guys nightly, straddling the corpses with an urgency more suggestive of lust than remorse, you might say that she is mellowing.

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