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Oscar-winner Juliette Binoche has a cameo in Eric Khoo’s SG50 short film

SINGAPORE — The SG50 anthology film 7 Letters is set to get a touch of the French connection — award-winning actress Juliette Binoche has a cameo in director Eric Khoo’s short film segment Cinema.

SINGAPORE — The SG50 anthology film 7 Letters is set to get a touch of the French connection — award-winning actress Juliette Binoche has a cameo in director Eric Khoo’s short film segment Cinema.

The acclaimed auteur shot a scene involving Binoche at Cavenagh Bridge on Saturday night (Dec 6). The 50-year-old actress was in town last week for the Singapore premiere of her new film Clouds of Sils Maria, which was screened as part of the 4th Rendezvous With French Cinema event held in conjunction with this year’s Singapore International Film Festival. The film, which also includes Kristen Stewart and Chloe Grace Moretz, is directed by France’s Olivier Assayas.

Khoo told TODAY both he and the French veteran actress shared the same publicist in France, Matilde Incerti.

“So yes, we’re not total strangers lah!” he joked. “We met before. And so when she was in Singapore, she came to visit me in Muse Studios while I was working on the sound for In The Room last Friday,” he said, referring to his feature-length “high-concept erotic drama” due next year.

Khoo said they spent time chatting about SG50 and his contribution to 7 Letters, which comprises seven short stories by seven of Singapore’s finest film-makers to celebrate the country’s Golden Jubilee next year.

“I gave her the storyline and as I started to describe this particular character, I suddenly looked her square in her eye and said, ‘Would you do this role for me?’”

According to Khoo, Binoche said yes without hesitation — even if it meant the actress, a former smoker, had to light up for the camera.

“I told her I really needed her to smoke on camera to which she replied, ‘I just stopped smoking two weeks ago!’” he recalled with a laugh. “But she still went ahead and did it for me. She’s so professional.”

One of the most lauded French actresses, Binoche achieved international acclaim with her English-language debut The Unbearable Lightness Of Being and Krzysztof Kieslowski’s Three Colors: Blue, for which she won Best Actress at the Venice Film Festival.

She also won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for The English Patient and nabbed an Oscar nomination for Chocolat. In 2010, she won the Best Actress Award at the Cannes Film Festival for her role in Abbas Kiarostami’s Certified Copy.

TODAY understands Binoche filmed on Saturday night under a very tight schedule in-between a masterclass she had given and an early morning flight back to France.

“She’s just amazing. So classic on camera,” Khoo gushed. “We’ve always wanted to collaborate and now we have.”

And as with almost everything, the collaboration came with a caveat, albeit a lovely one. Shared Khoo: “Juliette said to me, ‘I’ll do it for you, but now you have to come to France and make a movie!”

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