Inside the World of a Thespian: An Interview with Award-Winning Actress Laëtitia Eïdo
Actress Laëtitia Eïdo Discusses with Cultured Focus Magazine with Her Career Journey to Becoming a Leading Actress in Top Netflix and AppleTV Films.
Laëtitia Eïdo is a French actress and entertainer, born to a French father and a Lebanese mother. She has acted in eight languages and is a graduate in Architecture (DEFA) and has a Masters in Theatrical Writing at the Sorbonne-Nouvelle. The accomplished actress has been distinguished four times as 'Best Actress' for her role as the historical character of 'Fadhma N'Soumer', a Kabyle resistance fighter, in the feature film by B.Hadjadj (2016) and for her role as Dr. Shirin in “Fauda” (2020), which has had fans all over the world refer to her as the beating heart of the series. Eïdo holds one of the lead roles in the new Apple series "Liaison" alongside Eva Green and Vincent Cassel. The talented actress just finished filming alongside Aaron Eckhart, in the upcoming spy thriller "Chief of Station", along with premiering in the new Amazon show “Citadel” and the Belgian feature “The Madonna and Child”.
She has been called an outstanding actress by Deadline Hollywood, “with a resemblance to young Meryl Streep and the same tendency to steal the show in all of her scenes.” (Jerusalem Post) or even a vibrant actress by the magazine FemininBio, which she appeared on the cover of in September 2020. We will soon find her on the big screen in Terrence Malick's new film “The Way Of The Wind”, and she will once again join Eva Green in Martin Campbell’s (Casino Royale) next feature film "Dirty Angels".
At the start of her career, Eïdo worked as a set designer on stage and film sets, notably on the Sable Noir series for CinéCinéma with Julien Seri and B.Holmsteen. And as 1st Assistant Director on music videos and commercials with Fabien Dufils and Pierre Monnard. She also published part of her academic research in the theatrical journal Registres (2005) and pursues it today through photography, graphic arts, and the writing of various projects.
Interview: French Actress Laëtitia Eïdo
Hello, Laetitia thank you for speaking with me today. Tell us about your beginning in acting and how you got your start.
1. When did you first decide to pursue an acting career?
Laetitia: After 2 years of studying arts and architecture (visual arts and writing are my first love) a friend of mine offered me to replace her at the regional dramatic school because she was too shy to pursue it. I got accepted and 6 months later I was studying in Paris (both at university and theatre school). It was a radical change.
2. Tell me a little about yourself and your first time being on stage, how was that experience for you?
Laetitia: I started acting by being part of a few theater plays in Paris. My best experiences were at the very beginning with a non-professional company. These were my first times on stage (despite some ballet dances when I was young, but I wasn't a very good dancer. Though it gave me a taste of excitement and I was thrilled by the audience's presence in the dark... it's unforgettable) and I have very strong memories from those moments when you have to overcome your fears and when you feel that "the show must go on" whatever it takes...
One time, I had a blackout in the first professional play I acted in. It was the french tragedy "Andromaque" by French author Racine. The lines are in verses, so you cannot miss one or even a syllable... and suddenly I forgot like 2 pages... I was stuck! So... I took a deep breath and I just said very solemnly and looking outraged - like the character was supposed to feel at this point: "No, Sir... No..." and I left the stage, panicked. Now it makes me smile, but it's really an actor's recurrent nightmare to forget lines on stage! Also, for an actor, theatre is a long and deep involvement, so now I only aim for high-quality projects led by directors I admire and with great attention to the text. For me, words are sacred, and the energy, the vibration they convey. This is why, as the transmitter of these words, I decided now to be very picky about the subjects and style of the theatre plays I will be part of. It lead me to refuse the four projects I've been offered to be part of in recent years. I'm waiting for "the one".
3. You must be excited about the broadcast of "Liaison", tell us a bit about your role and what it was like to work alongside Eva Green.
Laetitia: It's the 1st European AppleTvPlus project, so I'm very excited to be part of it, alongside such great actors and in two languages. I've always played in many different languages, depending on the projects, but English and French are my favorites. In “Liaison”, I mainly work with Eva Green, Vincent Cassel, and Stanislas Mehrar, who all are intense actors, to say the least. It's really one of the perks of this job - to be able to connect with another energy, often different than yours, and share a moment of "pure presence" which will be felt by audiences on screen all over the world. It's a really powerful thing when you think about it. This is why seeking truth in emotions and delivery is for me so important.
I just worked with Eva Green again in Martin Campbell's new movie (“Casino Royale”, “Goldeneye”) and it was a blast again to act with her. She is an amazing actress and human being.
4. You have won Best Actress Award four times and that's quite impressive! You're known to play strong female characters, what has been your favorite role to play thus far?
Laetitia: I think my part in Netflix's hit tv show “Fauda”, was the one I could put my entire heart in. Because the challenge for me was so high, to play this part in a series about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and to be able to bring something that could be felt to be like a link between the two sides, between people... I still receive messages every day from all over the world where people call me ‘Dr. Shirin’ and they talk about the
Shirin Effect... I think what they are talking about is this love and empathy that I tried to embed in her, to make sure she will bring hope, in a world of war and despair.
Laëtitia Eïdo Film Gallery
5. Tell us about the toughest part of your work as an actor and why?
Laetitia: So many things are difficult in this line of work. It can be the years we spend working on ourselves and auditioning for tons of projects and getting 1 out of 100... Later comes the direct offers of parts on some projects, but it's only after years of commitment and improvement of our craft, of our instrument as we like to say. Once you know how to play it well, you still have work to do to refine your art and keep exercising, like a dancer would, to find more precise ways of making it resonate. This happens on set with every new part but also outside when nobody is watching, and during training. Sometimes it takes courage to question what you know, but it always brings more awareness to ourselves and on our path as an artist.
6. What has been your greatest challenge so far and how did you overcome it?
Laetitia: Maybe to play in 10 languages and eight that I don't know anything about apart from French and English that I can speak (as well as Spanish and Italian). I have acted in Greek, Latin (for Cleopatra— it was magical); then Arabic from North Africa and Palestine (totally different); and Berberian (also called Kabyle) with 29 letters and really hard. I had just ahead of the movie, 8 hours a day of dialog coaching... craziness, but it was worth it! Recently, I played in a Belgian movie called "The Virgin and Child" in French and Kurdish; and at last English and a bit of Pashto, which is an Afghani dialect in Martin Campbell's movie.
I learned all of them through phonetics. But as I said to the director of the movie in Belgium —I'm done with this exercise now. I can do a few sentences of pretty much any language in a movie, but the main lines have to be English or French.
6. Who are your biggest influences as an actress?
Laetitia: Meryl Streep and Joaquin Phoenix are my imaginary alter egos. Their acting is so inspiring for me and what they bring to the screen is so powerful, yet subtle at the same time.
7. As we conclude the interview, do you have any advice for someone just getting started in the industry?
Laetitia: My motos are if acting is really what you want to do: "Never give up". If you want to do it well: "Less is more"... let yourself open up to what's happening in the present moment and don't let your ego block the way. Accept to disappear and welcome what has to come. Your character lies in the words. Trust the words. Let the magic happen. It's all already here... Just say the lines and be present. Let yourself be. We are vibration. So let your body resonate and the emotion will follow. Undeniably. But that's maybe the most difficult thing to do, so... again: never give up.
Laëtitia Eïdo Video Showreel: https://www.laetitiaeido.com/showreel
Follow Laetitia on the web:
To learn more about her film “Fauda”, visit: