My France – Charlotte Peters

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Dingle-born actress Charlotte Peters shares her love of France with Tootlafrance.ie. The fair Kerry maid’s career has gone into overdrive recently. Having just completed the film Pound of Flesh China alongside Jean Claude Van Damme, Charlotte has now landed a lead role in a film in Hollywood.

1. What’s your favourite part of France?

They are so many that I enjoy for so many reasons. But the area I hold closest to my heart is the southwest. My family has a house near “Argelès-Sur-Mer” and it is such vibrant town, full of life and colour- I spend hours mulling around the galleries.

2. Why?

My mother is an art dealer and I learned to appreciate art and sculpture from a young age. The beauty and presence of the ocean, the waves, the seafood, beautiful landscapes, long beaches…

3. When was the first time you went there?

In my teens on family holidays

4. When was the last time you went there?

In February

5. What’s your favourite French food?

Les quenelles- a specialty of Lyon. The cheese and wine. I used to spend days going from market to market with my grandfather searching for the perfect red wine to compliment our Roquefort.

6. How friendly are the locals (out of 10)?

8…. The word I would use is “chaleureux

7. What’s the best thing about France?

It’s a country with history, the beaches, the mountains, la campagne. I remember doing a “randonnée” in Le Cantal and standing at the top of a mountain where I had a panoramic view that stretched as far as the eye could see: It felt like I was at the top of the world.

8. What’s the worst thing about France?

Personally I can’t think of anything because I moved there when I was 17yrs so I picked up the language like a sponge and the Irish have a knack for accents so people didn’t realize I wasn’t French until I started making “des faux pas” with “ le féminin et masculin” so they took me as their own. However, if you are a foreigner they can sometimes be a little guarded.

9. Tell me about the first time you went to France…

It was amazing. We went on family holidays from as far back as I can remember but the best time I had in France was when I went to Lyon, a beautiful city, like “un petit Paris” and had a beautiful stay in an Erasmus residence during my studies. I met so many people, French, Spanish, Italian, Swedish, Dutch… On the weekend, I used to go to the market on the quai of the Saône to shop. I remember jogging along the quai of the Rhône in the mornings and Parties on the “Péniche”, which is a boat on the quai on Saturday nights. The languid walks in the “Traboule”…

And on a Sunday we could get a bus to “les Alpes d’Huez” to ski for the day and be back that evening on time for college on the Monday.

Gad Elmaleh (r) with Romain Duris (l) and director Michel Gondry at the launch of L'Ecume des Jours (Mood Indigo)

Gad Elmaleh (r) with Romain Duris (l) and director Michel Gondry at the launch of L’Ecume des Jours (Mood Indigo)

10. What’s your favourite French word?

I have three: Bonjour! (said with an exclamation mark) Coccinelle et Papillon…. Oh wait! There are four, “Rougeoyant”, which is a description of all the different colours of the sky at sunset.

11. Who’s your favourite French personality?

Gad Elmaleh: I used fall around laughing at his stand-up and amongst friends, we would spend hours quoting every joke!

12. Is there any truth in the notion that French women/men are particularly attractive?

Yes, because of the French touch: Un je ne sais quoi qui fait la différence!

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