Quick, what do you think of when you hear “Chanel No. 5”? Classic? Iconic? French? Bien sûr. But the perfume and its latest frontwoman, Oscar-winning actress Marion Cotillard, are here to usher the 99-year-old best seller into the future, as evidenced in the whimsical new campaign directed by Johan Renck and choreographed by Ryan Heffington (whose résumé includes Sia’s “Chandelier” video). In the film, Cotillard and her costar, Étoile dancer Jérémie Bélingard, are transported from the streets of Paris to the moon and back. Watch the full video here at 6 a.m. EST on October 29th, and read on to discover what makes this fragrance and campaign magical in an exclusive Marie Claire interview.
Marie Claire: What was your early impression of Chanel No. 5?
Marion Cotillard: The first time I smelled it, I was kind of mesmerized right away by the mystery, the complexity. It was intimidating at first when I was a kid, but then pretty quickly, I started to wear it. I thought it was so amazing that a perfume could become unique on each person.
Marie Claire: How do you wear it today?
Marion Cotillard: I love the sensuality of the gesture, of having the bottle upside down and just putting some on the cap. Then I put it behind my ears and on my wrists, and I am the first person to smell it in the morning. Quite simple.
Marie Claire: Care to share some other scent memories?
Marion Cotillard: The sense of smell is very developed in me. Hot sand and pine trees, for example, really take me back to vacations with my family when I was a kid, and it’s very comforting.
Marie Claire: In the new No. 5 campaign, you sing! You dance! Tell us about the character.
Marion Cotillard: I often choose film characters that are very far from me. This character is someone who could actually be me. It was interesting to create her with ingredients that are part of me and also universal ingredients, like the emotion you go through when you’re in love. Ryan Heffington, who’s just a maestro of acting with dance, put in this choreography the joyfulness, the playfulness, the sensuality, the energy that I thought was really amazing to embody.