Finally…..the conversation with France Nuyen

The Palm Springs couple beside me at my assigned table watched as I approached France Nuyen. I bent over to speak but she told me to please sit in the empty chair beside her. I told her I enjoyed her work and have visited France. She thanked me, asked where in France I visited, listened and stated she’s from Marseilles, a city I’ve never visited.

As Ying Ying in The Joy Luck Club

She asked if I’m an actress, which made me feel good. I told her I love classic movies. She does too. She’s an attentive listener; perhaps due to her other career as a psychological counselor for abused women and children, and women in prison.

I’ve seen many of her films: South Pacific, A Girl Named Tamiko, Diamond Head, Satan Never Sleeps, Battle for the Planet of the Apes, and The Joy Luck Club. I’m not a Trekkie but even I have seen the Star Trek episode “Elaan of Troyius.” Despite all I’ve seen,  I only specifically mentioned a video interview on youtube where she referenced buying a Hermes scarf as a teen. Hermes bag later. She disclosed she was a student at L’Ecole des beaux arts. The video is a wonderful revelation to her appreciation of style, love for fashion, and the arts in general. It is one of the best celebrity interviews out there. Hermes needs to contact her and make her a spokesmodel. I’d love to see France all over magazines and billboards… maybe the catwalk.

It surprised her that I saw the obscure video but she was intrigued. She asked how I found the video because another fan saw it and mailed her a Hermes scarf. I replied I was searching for her speaking French. I’m always trying to learn French. One of my favorite ways is to find videos of French actors speaking French, especially interviews. I looked for her, Brigitte Bardot and Danielle Darrieux to name a few. My knowledge of Danielle Darrieux surprised her but bien sûr I’m a fan of films older than she. I added I had just written a fan letter to Darrieux. “No” she replied, “it can’t be.” She believed Darrieux to be around 110 years old. “She’s 97” I assured her.” I wrote to her talent agency. She still works” I asked if she had met her, she replied “no” but she remembered her from her childhood.


Danielle Darrieux

I thought France lived in Hawaii but she lives locally in the Los Angeles area. She’d love to live in Hawaii but lamented it’s too expensive. Thank goodness she is in Los Angeles not Hawaii as it makes it easier for me to possibly see her again.  I’d love a photo opportunity with her. Before I left, she urged me to continue practicing my French. She feels it’s an important language. I agree but she’s French so obviously she must be biased. She still has a slight accent to me but I don’t know how it would sound to a French person living in France. Back at my table, the couple asked if I got a photo. I replied in the negative. They said after the banquet they’d take my photo but it wasn’t to be because I wanted to speak to Jane Withers.….