Bérénice Bejo is a name you might not know yet. You might not even be sure how to pronounce it. However, one thing is certain, she is getting better known after her recent role in the 2011 silent, black-and-white French movie, The Artist, and has received her first Oscar nomination of Best Supporting Actress for the same movie. She plays Peppy Miller, a young wanna-be dancer that one day bumps into her favorite silent movie star and catches her big break. Just like her character, Bérénice has landed her first world-wide recognized film which has already won three Golden Globes and is one of the favorites for the upcoming Oscars with 10 nominations, including Best Motion Picture of the Year.
The reason why we have taken a special interest in her, besides her talent, is because she is from Argentina! She was born in Buenos Aires, where her family is originally from. When she was three, because of the dictatorship, they had decided to relocate to France. Curiously enough, while living in Argentina, her father, Miguel Bejo, was also in the filmmaking industry as a director.
Since she has moved away at such an early age, one would expect that the only Argentine thing about her is her nationality. Surprisingly, she is still very much attached to this country’s culture and that she comes to Buenos Aires often to visit her extended family. As it might happen to anyone in any other countries, there is an overall excitement in the air that resembles pride when a native is successful in a world-wide business. Today, Bérénice is doing this for Argentina and she is very much embraced and celebrated by our local media.
The movie, The Artist, has just arrived in theaters here. If you are in Argentina, we highly recommend you to go see it. It is different and very well done, and it ironically introduces the magic of silent films to the newer generations that are born with and are only used to the culture of color and sound, and reality TV. For those who are learning Spanish, it’d be a great opportunity to practice your reading and comprehension skills too because the text they show on screen will be in Spanish.
Bérénice will be in for some tough competition at the Oscars but I’ll keep my fingers crossed!