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Francois Hollande’s alleged lover Julie Gayet nominated for César film award

Gayet has earned a César nomination for Best Supporting Actress

John Lichfield
Friday 31 January 2014 12:15 GMT
French actress Julie Gayet has been nominated for best supporting actress in the French equivalent of the Oscars
French actress Julie Gayet has been nominated for best supporting actress in the French equivalent of the Oscars (EPA)

President François Hollande’s alleged lover, the actress Julie Gayet, was today nominated as “best supporting actress” in the French equivalent of the Oscars.

Ms Gayet, 41, who has never previously won an acting award, was nominated today for a “César” as “best supporting actress” for her performance in Quai d’Orsay as a nymphomaniac diplomat in a comedy about the French foreign ministry.

By a curious coincidence, one of the four other nominations for “ best actress in a second role” is the mother of the former French First lady, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy.

Marisa Borini, 83, has been nominated for her performance – essentially playing herself – in a semi-autobiograpical movie, Un Château en Italie, directed by her other daughter Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi.

Ms Gayet has not been seen in public since her relationship with the President was exposed. Two questions rise. Will she attend the César awards ceremony at the Théâtre du Châtelet on 28 February? Who, if anyone, will be her escort?

Last weekend Mr Hollande announced that he was “putting an end” to his seven years unmarried partnership with his First Lady, Valérie Trierweiler.

The end of a relationship

The nomination for Ms Gayet came exactly three weeks after Closer magazine revealed that Ms Gayet had been conducting a clandestine love affair with the President of the Republic.

Closer later claimed that the relationship began two years ago, before Mr Hollande was elected. Other French media suggest that the love affair began soon after Mr Hollande entered the Élysée Palace 20 months ago.

Ms Gayet has appeared in more than 50 French movies or TV films. She is also a cinema producer.

Most of her performances have been as bland women-next-door. In the 2013 movie “Quai d’Orsay”, she won universal praise from French critics for her portrayal of a very different type of character.

The film, directed by Bertrand Tavernier, is a movie version of two successful comic books which satirise the career of the former French foreign minister, Dominique de Villepin. Ms Gayet plays a sex-mad diplomat.

The biggest winner in today’s nominations was another comedy movie, Les Garçons et Guillaume à Table, which scooped ten nominations including best film, best first film,  best actor  and best director for its director and principal actor, Guillaume Gallienne. The movie is an autobiographical comedy about Mr Gallienne’s relationship with his mother and other women.

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