Academy Award-winning Actress Marion Cotillard was born on September 30, 1975 in Paris. Cotillard is the daughter of Jean-Claude Cotillard, an actor, playwright and director, and Niseema Theillaud, an actress and drama teacher.
Raised in Orléans, France, she made her acting debut as a child with a role in one of her father's plays. She studied drama at the Conservatoire d'Art Dramatique in Orléans. While still a teenager, Cotillard made her cinema debut in the film L'histoire du garçon qui voulait qu'on l'embrasse. Her first prominent screen role was as Lilly Bertineau in Taxi, a role which she reprised in two sequels: Taxi 2 and Taxi 3, this role earned her first César award nomination for Most Promising Actress in 1999.
In 2001 she starred in Pretty Things as the twin sisters Marie and Lucie, and was nominated for a César award for Most Promising Actress for her performance.
Cotillard's breakthrough in France came in 2003 when she starred in the film Love Me If You Dare as Sophie Kowalsky, the daughter of Polish immigrants, opposite her friend at the time Guillaume Canet, with whom she would have a relationship four years later.
In 2007, Cotillard received international recognition for her iconic portrayal of Édith Piaf in La Vie en Rose. Director Olivier Dahan cast Cotillard to play the legendary French singer because to him, her eyes were like those of "Piaf". The fact that she can sing also helped Cotillard land the role of "Piaf", although most of the singing in the film is that of Piaf's. The role won Cotillard the Academy Award for Best Actress along with a César, a BAFTA Award, and a Golden Globe. That made her only the second actress to win an acting Oscar performing in a language other than English next to Sophia Loren (Two Women). Only two male performers (Roberto Benigni for Life Is Beautiful and Robert De Niro for The Godfather: Part II) have won an Oscar for solely non-English parts. Trevor Nunn called her portrayal of "Piaf" "one of the greatest performances on film ever". At the Berlin International Film Festival, where the film premiered, Cotillard was given a 15-minute standing ovation.
Cotillard has worked much more frequently in English-language movies following her Academy Award recognition. In 2009, she acted opposite Johnny Depp in Michael Mann's Public Enemies, and later that year had a role in musical Nine and received a Golden Globe nomination for her performance as Luisa Contini. Time magazine ranked her as the fifth best performance by a female in 2009. The following year, she took on the main antagonist role in Christopher Nolan's Inception, and in 2011 she had memorable parts in Midnight in Paris and Contagion and reteamed with Christopher Nolan in The Dark Knight Rises.
In 2011 and 2012 respectively, she appeared on the top of the list of the highest paid actors in France that was released by Le Figaro, she was also the highest paid foreign actress in Hollywood. It was the first time in nine years that a female has topped the list.
In 2012, Cotillard received wide-spread critical acclaim for her role as the orca trainer Stéphanie in Rust and Bone. The film received a ten-minute standing ovation at the end of its screening at the 65th Cannes Film Festival. Cotillard was nominated for Critics' Choice, Golden Globe, SAG, BAFTA and César Awards for her performance in the movie. Cate Blanchett wrote an article for Variety praising Cotillard's performance in "Rust and Bone", the two actresses competed for the Academy Awards for Best Actress in 2008, Cate was nominated for her performance in Elizabeth: The Golden Age and Marion for her performance in La Vie en Rose and Cotillard won the Oscar.
Her first leading role in a Hollywood movie came in 2013 as Ewa Cybulski, a Polish immigrant who wants to experience the American dream in James Gray's The Immigrant. Cotillard received wide-spread acclaim for her perfomance in the film at the 66th Cannes Film Festival, where the film premiered.
With long-time boyfriend Guillaume Canet, Cotillard gave birth to her first child, Marcel, in May 2011.
Born to a French mother and Martinican father, Alex was raised in the heart of central France. His father, a Vietnamese martial-arts instructor, initiated him into the arts at an early age. Alex soon became a star of the podiums, winning 3 times the title of champion of France in Viet Vo Dao between 1997 and 2000.
At 17 years old, while still following his sports studies, Alex also began to practice dance, Parkour (aka "the Art of displacement, initially made popular by the Yamakasi, and later by its namesake film) and acrobatics.
This combination of moving arts led him to create a show combining sports, stunts and acting, with the proceeds benefiting children's education in Viet Nam.
His regional notoriety got him a place on the generic for the film Kiss of the Dragon with Jet Li. His role, while canceled at the last minute, sparked his decision to focus on his professional acting ambition and led him, over the course of three years, to play in two successful musical comedies. His performance was recognized and he was invited to study for two years at the International Academy of Acting, Singing and Dancing.
At the end of his training, Alex decided to transition from live acting to film. He completed film acting and English classes before officially auditioning as an actor from 2005. His chameleon like appearance associated with his incredible physical ability, have brought him a variety of professional experiences.
The famous international series, Galactik Football (2006 - 2008) taught him how to act in Motion Capture. He had roles in ten different Indian films between 2006 and 2010 during a stint in Bollywood. In France, Alex started his acting career in Banlieue 13 Ultimatum by Patrick Alessandrin and the highly acclaimed film The Prodigies by Antoine Charreyron (2011).
Between 2012 and 2013, Alex played in three French films: Rust and Bone by Jacques Audiart, starring Marion Cotillard and Matthias Schoenaerts, The Lookoot by Michele Placido with Daniel Auteuil and Matthieu and Jeu De Couples by Maxwell A. Cavevall. He has also had roles in two American films: Battle of the year: Plaent B-Boy by Benson Lee, starring Josh Holloway and the singer Chris Brown and Fast and Furious 6 by Justin Lin, with Vin Diesel, Paul Walker and Dwayne Johnson.
After school Barrett attended Tralee IT where he studied Film, TV and Media. Also worked and trained in Radio with Kerry Radio.
In 2012 at the age of 24, Barrett's debut feature film 'Pilgrim Hill' premiered at the Galway International Film Festival in Ireland and immediately garnered critical acclaim, with critics calling the film a "masterful debut from a first time filmmaker". He won the Best New Irish Talent Award at the Festival and the film won the Irish Times Best Film of the Festival. The film was then personally selected by Tom Luddy for the prestigious Telluride Film Festival in Colorado where it made it's North American premiere alongside 'Argo' and 'Rust and Bone'. Barrett was also selected as the Great Expectation at the Festival, an honour bestowed to such filmmakers as Alexander Payne.
In February 2013 Barrett won the IFTA Rising Star Award at the Irish Film and Television Awards in Dublin. Previous winners of the award include his fellow Kerryman Michael Fassbender, Saoirse Ronan, Domhnall Gleeson, John Michael McDonagh and Chris O'Dowd.
Barrett signed with Martin Scorsese's agent at WME in Los Angeles before the Telluride Film Festival and was already signed with Michael Fassbender's Agents at the London Troika Talent Agency.
Pilgrim Hill then went on to screen in competition at the London BFI Film Festival where Barrett was also selected as the Rising Star of the Festival with fellow Irishman Jack Reynor. It also screened in competition at the prestigious Busan Asian International Film Festival where it was in the same category as 'Argo' and "Beasts of the Southern Wild' . Barrett also picked up the Rising Star award at the NYFF in New York. 'Pilgrim Hill' went on to screen at festivals in Toronto, Rome, Moscow, Paris, Israel, Africa, Poland and many more.