Juliette Binoche: ‘Does Steven Spielberg hate me? You’ll have to ask him’ | Juliette Binoche

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My first memory is running in a corridor with my diaper on, looking for my parents, when I was two. I was alone in the apartment in the suburbs of Paris. My mother had taken my sister to see a movie. I don’t know where my father was.

My parents decided to put my sister and I into boarding school because they were separating and my grandmother was a cook there, which meant they didn’t have to pay for a while. I was in the kindergarten so I wasn’t in the same dormitory as my older sister. I was playing all the time, imagining stories, trying to heal my broken dolls. That was my realm, where I felt I belonged, and the only way I could be happy.

I always wanted to do theatre because my parents were from the theatre. I remember when my mother first took me. It gave me such joy to experience a play that, at the end, made everyone stand up and applaud. I thought: if I can receive that joy, I also want to give it.

When I committed to becoming an actress, I wanted to do theatre, because that was more my world. When I started to act in films, it was a surprise.

My mind wasn’t working when I went up to receive my Oscar [Binoche won the Best Supporting Actress award for The English Patient]. You’re in a space of awe, in this surprising state of not really knowing why it’s happening. I didn’t know what I was going to say. It was the surprise of my life.

Does Steven Spielberg hate me? [Binoche turned down parts in Indiana Jones, Schindler’s List and Jurassic Park.] You’ll have to ask him. I haven’t bumped into him for a while. I don’t think he cares that much that I said no.

I don’t know what I see when I look in the mirror. Sometimes it feels like the outside and the inside don’t fit together, depending on the morning or evening, or the light, my mood, if I’m in character, not in character, if I’m in love or not in love.

I cry all the time. It’s part of being alive. I cry a lot when I pray – it’s that feeling of being a sinner, and a human being with needs.

I think you have to pray. You have to have an inside world. You have to have a link between the invisible and the visible. You have to create this relationship within you. That’s who we are. It helps you with the big emotions we go through as human beings: jealousy, anger, the feeling of betrayal. Faith keeps you humble.

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