Posted on 08 November 2013 by Dan Johnson
If the allure of your own holiday home in France includes the opportunity to learn, or get better at French, take heart from these celebrities who have successfully gone through the struggle and now speak the language fluently.
1/ During the publicity process for his hit film Hangover 2, star Bradley Cooper revealed he is a fluent French speaker, a skill gained from his time as a student in Aix-en-Provence. He puts his love of the language down to watching the film Chariots of Fire: “There’s a scene where a guy was speaking French and I thought, ‘Man, that sounds so cool. I want to learn French.’.”
2/ Before creating Harry Potter, JK Rowling was a French teacher, and her love of the language crops up throughout the world of Harry Potter. Many of the made-up names from the books are based on French words – such as the characters Malfoy (‘mal foi’ means bad faith) and Fleur Delacour (‘fleur’ means flower and ‘delacour’ means ‘of the court’), and in the name of the Beauxbatons Academy of Music (beauxbatons means beautiful wands).
3/ Jonny Wilkinson has enjoyed some of his most successful rugby years playing in the south of France for Toulon. He has learnt the language and is at ease talking to the French press – he’s even starred in French adverts.
4/ Actor Jodie Foster speaks French so well that she has even dubbed her own French-language films. She learnt to speak the language at an exclusive French prep school in Los Angeles and worked in France as a teenager.
5/ British actress Kristin Scott Thomas has lived in France since she was 19 and is now one of the best known actresses in French cinema, where she says there are better roles for women than in Hollywood.
6/ Johnny Depp is perhaps the most famous non-French celebrity living in France, thanks to his long term relationship with French singer Vanessa Paradis. He learnt to speak the language to keep up with his bilingual kids, although he admits that his accent needs lots of work.
7/ Comedian Eddie Izzard took his French-speaking a step further by delivering his stand-up shows in French. His tip for learning the language is to practice through conversation – in the run up to shows he would spend hours in local cafés chatting to friends who would correct his mistakes.
8/ Joseph Gordon-Levitt, star of Batman blockbuster The Dark Knight rises, is a Francophile who studied French poetry at Columbia University and is now a fluent French speaker.
9/ Marathon runner Paula Radcliffe is used to travelling the world for races and has found that her ability to speak good French has helped her settle in to international events. She even gained a first-class honours degree in French from university.
10/ Film actor John Malkovich is a fluent French speaker and worked in a theatre in the south of France for 10 years, before leaving the country in a dispute over taxes.
11/ Ex US Presidential candidate Mitt Romney lived in Paris in the 1960s and speaks fluent French. But his talent was attacked by some during his attempt to become the US President – his critics said he was too French.
When you own your own holiday home in France you can immerse yourself in the French language, it’s the most effective way to learn.
Find out more about owning a holiday home with siblu.
Tags | Celebrities who speak French