So you think you know Kylie Minogue? Think again. There’s more to everyone’s favourite showgirl than meets the eye, and the pint-size starlet isn’t afraid to show it in Leos Carax’s dark drama Holy Motors.
Kylie plays a tragic, trenchcoated femme fatale in the French film director‘s latest venture, due out in the UK in September. Speaking in French and sporting a Jean Seberg-inspired pixie crop, we barely recognised the ‘I Should Be So Lucky’ singer when the film premiered at the Cannes Film Festival.
Also starring Eva Mendes and French actor Denis Lavant, the film falls into the category of the downright bizarre, marking a massive departure from the mainstream for the pop princess. According to Kylie, a seismic shift like this couldn’t have come soon enough:
“It has had such a profound impact on my life, being able to do this work. It satisfies something in me that I was longing for,” Minogue told The Sydney Morning Herald. “I’ve hated being pigeonholed, from day one. And I’m still chipping away.
Described by The Sydney Morning Herald as giving a “haunting and melancholic” performance in the film, as well as speaking what she refers to as “emergency French”, Kylie also sings (in English) in the film the song Who We Were. Written by director Carax and the Divine Comedy’s Neil Hannon, Kylie’s vocals were recorded as the cameras rolled. Pretty impressive stuff from the woman dubbed by The Mirror to have “as much acting charisma as cold porridge”.
Speaking of the filming process, Kylie said: “It was overall a very beautiful experience. Obviously I’m used to a different world, the pop music world, but I began acting at the start of my career so it was nice to come back to that.
“It felt great to be back on set. I took it very seriously and I banned my entire entourage from coming with me – I stripped myself of being Kylie to pretty much be a blank canvas for Leos.”
The film made it to Cannes against the odds after the producers struggled to secure financial backing.
She told the Guardian: “I’d definitely love to do more acting. My heart cries out for it; it’s such a deep longing. For years I’ve been waiting to get back into it and it just hasn’t happened. Or, it has happened and it was so disastrous that I thought: ‘Oh, it’s just not for me.’”
Producer Martine Marignac said: “The banks didn’t want to follow through and the film nearly did not get made. The difficulty in financing this kind of film hinges on the fact that it is not viewed as very commercial.”
And we’re not completely surprised. The film sees Eva Mendes allow a man called Monsieur Merde to eat her hair, two bonobo chimps play house in suburban Paris, an extended scene of cybermonster sex, some talking limousines and a suicidal air hostess.
Hardly what we’d call “commercial”, but we’re intrigued!
Watch the Holy Motors film trailer below…