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Jane Fonda: “The French are too macho for my taste”

2024-03-02T06:24:49.448Z

Highlights: Jane Fonda is the ambassador of Pomellato for Women. The actress is known for her role in the 1970s anti-Vietnam War protests. Fonda: “In our patriarchal societies, boys are still taught too much, from a very young age, that “real men don’t cry”“We must teach them to develop their emotional intelligence, to know how to show their vulnerability,” she says. “I don't like old skin”: if Jane Fonda had a lover, he would have to be 20 years old.


Hollywood icon, tireless activist, the ambassador of Pomellato For Women continues her fight for women's rights and the environment.


Bright red is his favorite color, that of revolt, that of his struggles.

And it was also dressed all in red that she demonstrated every week, in 2019, in Washington, in front of the Capitol.

For four months, Jane Fonda marched against global warming.

These

“Fire Drill Fridays”

to denounce an Earth on fire earned “Citizen Jane” at least five arrests and a night in prison, at almost 83 years old!

“We saw an old lady not afraid of being arrested,” she rejoiced.

My experience played down the risks faced by protesters and encouraged others to join us.”

Putting her notoriety at the service of others while gradually freeing herself from the shackles and conventions that had imprisoned her since childhood: this is how Jane Fonda methodically took control of her destiny.

Born in Hollywood, the eldest daughter of the legendary Henry Fonda (and sister of Peter) became an icon, in the truest sense of the term.

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Also read “I don’t like old skin”: if Jane Fonda had a lover, he would have to be 20 years old

The star struck our collective unconscious with the force of her iconography: sex symbol of the 1960s, sheathed in the silver jumpsuit of the adventurer Barbarella, she sports a mullet cut in

Klute

(1972) and, for this character of call- girl in psychoanalysis, won her first Oscar.

The second was awarded to her in 1979 for

Retour

, a denunciation of the traumas of the Vietnam War, a project that she herself had initiated, in the light of her pacifist commitment.

In Jane Fonda's photo album, we then think of her period as a "counter-culture figure of the seventies", immortalized by her

mug shot

(arrest photo) from 1970: clear gaze, defiant attitude and clenched fist the way of the Black Panthers.

The following decade, she became a fitness queen – dazzling smile, XXL blow dry, neon leotard and leg warmers – and record holder for VHS sales (17 million!).

Not content with having boosted the growth of the video cassette industry, the early feminist also initiated a

wellness

revolution  : aerobics as a well-being practice accessible to all women.

A pioneer of committed stars, Jane Fonda is today considered a model by celebrities wishing to transform their notoriety into a platform for change.

She continues her journey, freer still, offering us a renewed version of herself: the “activist” (contraction of actress and activist) with a thin waist and a silver helmet – she recently banned coloring for the sake of health and authenticity – shares her struggles and new gym routines with three million followers on social media.

At 86, the author of

What to Do

?

From despair to action, let's save the planet

!

(Éditions Albin Michel, 2021) puts its unparalleled vitality at the service of women and ecology.

Madame Figaro.

– This March 8, International Women's Day, marks your seventh campaign as ambassador of Pomellato for Women.

This year's theme is the questions raised by violence against women... Why such

violence

and how can we put an end to it

?


Jane Fonda.

In our patriarchal societies, boys are still taught too much, from a very young age, that “real men don’t cry.”

Instead, we must teach them to develop their emotional intelligence, to know how to show their vulnerability.

Because being a man or showing one's virility has nothing to do with violence, as recalled by Olympic swimming medalist Gregorio Paltrinieri, also involved in this campaign against violence against women.

Men are not born “programmed” to harm women, it is not in their nature.

It is a behavior that they reproduce when they have witnessed it since childhood or of which they have been victims themselves.

And it becomes a problem when we women do not exercise our rights, when we do not protest.

We must and we can all become vigilantes, social sentinels, to contribute to the denunciation of this violence against women.

Pacifism, anti-racism, gender equality and women's emancipation..., you have been fighting on all fronts since the 1970s. Why does global warming outweigh all other issues in your eyes

?


I slowed down my activism for women's rights when, among other things, I understood that the crisis we are going through was mainly due to the burning of fossil fuels.

Because nothing that matters to me or what matters to each of us will be able to fully exist in the face of the multiplication of hurricanes, floods, fires, waves of drought, and their consequences in terms of shortages of food or drinking water.

Our health systems, very tested by Covid, will not be strong enough to deal with the scale of the situation.

If we do not quickly stop permitting new oil drilling and shale gas extraction, if we do not significantly reduce their combustion, if we do not put an end to the extreme weather events that we are already experiencing, it will be very difficult to obtain rights for anyone, especially for women, who are always the first victims of crises.

And in the midst of this chaos, democracy will also be seriously tested...

We women should never have to diminish ourselves to make our partner feel good

Jane Fonda

You represent a model of engagement spanning generations.

How can we avoid the disconnect between adults from the “world before” and younger people

?


The key is listening.

We must listen to young people to understand them and be present alongside them.

It's one thing for an 86-year-old woman to talk about the climate crisis.

It's another to be 16 and know that your future may not be hospitable to human life.

Let their desperation, anger and passion inspire us to act!

We must understand that their ecoanxiety is a sign of connection to the world and a normal reaction to the injustices inflicted on the planet and living things.

So we shouldn't tell them, "Oh, it's going to be okay."

Because things may not go well, and we have to be honest and constructive with them.

I really like what Greta Thunberg says: “When we start to act, hope is everywhere.

So instead of looking for hope, look for action.

And only then will there be hope.”

Today, who inspires you, gives you energy

?


Activists, some of whom are part of the Jane Fonda Climate PAC, my political action committee, Greenpeace, or the Sunrise movement, the student association behind the “Ecological New Deal.”

They push me to surpass myself!

There is also Eve Ensler, the feminist author of The

Vagina Monologues

(which now signs with the letter “V”), who is one of my close friends.

She inspires me deeply with her creations and her political actions, particularly against violence against women.

We are on the same wavelength.

I only meet a few people in the film industry, apart from dear friends, like Lily Tomlin, with whom I have been making films and series for over forty years (

How to Get Rid of Your Boss

,

in 1980, Grace and Frankie

,

to date the longest original series created by Netflix, Editor's note.

) Female friendships are so precious for our health, mental and physical... I don't know what I would do without my friends.

They make me stronger, smarter and more courageous.

Descartes said: “I think, therefore I am.”

I say: “I am, because I have friends.”

You have entered what you define as the third act of your life.

What do you know today that you wish you knew earlier

?


That marriage is difficult.

I have been married three times, and I regret nothing, because each of these unions taught me a lot.

But I haven't had the chance to have long-term intimate relationships with men.

I didn't have the keys.

My father was married five times!

I only realize now that I'm not good at this.

I recently admitted to my third husband, Ted Turner (

the founder of CNN, Editor's note

), that it was partly my fault if things didn't work out between us.

It did me good.

The other two, Roger Vadim and Tom Hayden (

an American political activist, Editor's note

) have died, so it is too late.

The problem with the phrase “fell in love” is “fell.”

We should enter into a love affair that we hope will last by standing up straight, on our feet, by engaging with another adult who does the same.

We women should never have to diminish ourselves to make our partner feel good…

We must listen to young people to understand them and be present alongside them

Jane Fonda

You lived in France for eight years and speak our language fluently.

How do you feel close to French culture

?


I consider France my second homeland.

I love its countryside, its old houses and its stone walls.

I love bread and the relationship the French have with food.

Even if I am aware of the tensions around your production model and the difficulties in maintaining it, France remains an agricultural country.

Take the train and, as soon as you leave Paris, you will see fields where cows graze, not feedlots or industrial farms, like in the United States.

This is why your diet is so good!

From a relational point of view, on the other hand, the French are too macho for my taste, even if my first husband, Roger Vadim, appreciated strong and independent women.

Finally, I love the natural elegance of French women, their sense of style, so chic.

I'm not sure this can be learned.

Exactly, red carpets, designer dresses, high jewelry, like those from Pomellato, do you still like getting dressed

?


Yes, I always enjoy dressing up to go out, and I love Pomellato's designs.

I appreciate these special occasions even more since I don't wear a lot of jewelry on a daily basis.

Furthermore, I changed my shopping habits.

And I'm glad I'm not the only one.

Like more and more of my sisters and brothers in Hollywood, I prefer second hand to new clothes.

I like the term “vintage”: sublime pieces, in excellent condition, that suit you perfectly.

At my age, I prioritize comfort.

You often talk about the importance of knowing where you come from in order to become who you are supposed to be...


On the eve of my 60th birthday, I felt the compelling need to take stock of the situation, to take my life in review.

I had been a daughter of, an actress, an activist, a wife, a mother… I was starting to worry because I didn't know how I should live the next act, the last thirty years of my life.

After aiming for perfection for a long time – in vain! – I understood that I had another job to do: to become authentic, whole.

I began a work of introspection, carried out research on my childhood, on my adolescence, and this resulted in my memoirs,

My life

(Éditions Plon, 2005).

It also allowed me to make amends with my children (

Vanessa Vadim, Troy Garity and Mary Luana Williams, Editor's note

), for whom I was not always the mother I would have liked to be.

When I was younger, I didn't know anything about it... Since then, I've studied parenting, I'm trying to improve.

Knowing where we have been allows us to better envision where we are going.

And it's never too late.

I don't know what I would do without my friends, they make me stronger and more courageous

Jane Fonda

Your film career began in 1960 with

La Tête à L'Envers

, alongside Anthony Perkins.

In 2022, you ended the Netflix series

Grace and Frankie

after seven seasons.

How do you see the evolution of the place of women in this industry

?


I like the fact that today we see many more women on film crews and in various roles – carpenter, electrician, cameraman or director – who are finally going beyond stereotypes.

When I started as an actress, the only other woman on a set was the scriptwriter, responsible for the continuity of the shoot.

We felt alone.

I also love the “intimacy coaches” set up for actors since MeToo.

Sadly, they appeared long after my sex scenes were over, but they would have been very useful!

I would like to make one last good film.

When I said I was retiring at 53, I thought it was the end of my career.

Since my return to cinema, I feel extremely privileged to always be offered new roles.

I never thought I would still be working at my age!

However, in this presidential election year in the United States, my climate activism is taking over.

This will be the most important election in our history, because the person who wins the presidency of the country and those who occupy important positions in Washington will have to ensure that they serve citizens and not corporations, in order to ensure a democratic and livable future for all.

These reasons led me to create the Jane Fonda Climate PAC political action committee, which focuses on one goal: defeating fossil fuel advocates and electing climate advocates to all levels of government.

This is the most important thing I would like to accomplish.

Source: lefigaro

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