After months-nay, years-of are-they-or-aren’t-they news concerning the making of the next James Bond film, last week, we finally got confirmation that Bond 23 is, in fact, happening! And it has a name: Skyfall. How mysterious! For Skyfall, Sam Mendes takes over the directorial reigns from Martin Campbell, the director of the last two Bond flicks, Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace, Daniel Craig returns as 007, Javier Bardem has signed on to play the dastardly villain… and of course there’s got to be a Bond girl or two. Ladies and gentlemen, meet Berenice Marlohe, who, alongside familiar face Naomi Harris, will be stepping into the shoes of one of Skyfall’s exotic Bond girls. But you may be wondering: Who exactly is Berenice Marlohe and why haven’t you heard of her before? Well, since she’s a relative unknown, there’s plenty to learn about her. Allow us to enlighten you with these 20 facts about the French beauty!
Before we begin, a note about the number: Normally, yes, we’d be sharing with you 25 facts about Berenice, not 20. However, information about this lovely lady is extremely scarce, so we’ve pulled together everything we could find-which amounted to five facts fewer than usual. Forgive us just this once; we still guarantee there are many tidbits of information here that you don’t know. And away we go
1. At 32 (she was born on May 19, 1979), Berenice is one of the older Bond girls in recent memory.Eva Green (Vesper Lynde in Casino Royale) was only 26 at the time she donned the mantel and Gemma Arterton (Strawberry Fields in Quantum of Solace) was a mere 22.
2. But! She’s still not the oldest recent Bond girl on the block: Halle Berry beats her by 4 years.She was 36 when she played Jinx in Die Another Day.
3. Skyfall could well be Berenice’s big break. Up til now, she’s worked primarily in French television on shows like Père et Maire (Father and Mayor) and Femmes de Loi (Women of the Law).
4. In fact, she’s a relative newcomer to acting: Her first gig was a short entitled La Discordance(The Discordance), which she made just four years ago in 2007.
5. Naturally, though, you won’t be surprised to find out that she’s also a model. That’s what she did before breaking into acting.
6. You want proof? Well, we can’t think why you’d need it, but here’s her portfolio.
7. We don’t know much about the new Bond girl’s character, but according to Berenice, her name is Severine, and she’s “glamours and enigmatic.” Well, doesn’t that sound like fun!
8. Apparently she’s married, though we don’t know who the lucky guy is.
9. Berenice made her big screen debut just this year in the French film L’Art de Séduire (The Art of Seduction)…
10. …And Skyfall marks her English-speaking debut.
11. She may be new to the world of Bond, but Berenice no stranger to playing sexy characters. For the French medical drama Équipe Médicale d’Urgence, she shot an incredibly steamy love scene wearing only a red wig. How scandalous!
12. You may have noticed how stunning she looked at the Skyfall press conference last week. Her attention-grabbing bright red frock was designed by Antonio Berardi, and she loved wearing it. She told the Daily Mail, “It’s great. I feel very sexy in it.” So very Bond girl!
13. What does she have in common with Pippa Middleton? Well, that Antonio Berardi dress seen from the, ahem, rear caused people to compare Berenice with Pippa’s bridesmaid dress. Think they’d be interested in doing a wardrobe swap?
14. Berenice is quite the go-getter. She heard about the Bond auditions six months ago-including the fact that they were taking place (as chance would have it) in Paris. Since she was also based in Paris, she contacted the casting director herself to get a spot on the list. Now that’s dedication! Hear her talk about the experience here.
15. Her audition consisted of two big scenes from the movie-but that’s all she’s allowed to tell us. Mum’s the word on everything Skyfall.
16. She did, however, reveal that she had to learn how to fire a gun for the movie. Do we sense some ass-kicking in the future? I think so!
17. Director Sam Mendes very pointedly referred to Berenice and Naomi Harris’ characters as“Bond ladies,” rather than Bond girls. Good to know that 007 is moving with the times. Hoorah for gender equality!
18. However, Bond girls-er, ladies-are fairly well-known for getting nekked during the films. Will this be the case for Berenice? She doesn’t know, but she told friends at a photo shoot in Paris that shehoped she’d get a swimsuit scene.
19. She’s currently shooting a comedy called Un Bonheur N’arrive Jamais Seul with none other thanformer Bond girl Sophie Marceau (Elektra King in The World Is Not Enough).
20. Speaking of Sophie Marceau: Berenice is the the sixth French actress to have played a Bond girl. The other five are Claudine Auger (Thunderball, 1965), Caroline Bouque (For Your Eyes Only, 1981), Sophie Marceau (The World Is Not Enough, 1999), Eva Green (Casino Royale, 2006), and Olga Kurylenko (Quantum of Solace, 2008-who was raised in the Ukraine, but moved to Paris when she was 16, later becoming a French citizen in 2001).