Sonia Rolland

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Sonia Rolland
Beauty pageant titleholder
Sonia Rolland.jpg
Sonia Rolland in 2009
Born (1981-02-11) February 11, 1981 (age 33)
Kigali, Rwanda
Height 1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)
Title(s) Miss France 2000
Miss Burgundy 1999

Sonia Rolland (born February 11, 1981) is a French actress and former Miss France (2000) she has also competed at Miss Universe. She is the first African-born Miss France pageant winner.

Born in Kigali, Rwanda to a Rwandan mother and a French father. Rolland and her family fled the country due to safety concerns with the Rwandan Genocide instigating, especially since her mother is Tutsi. In 1990 they moved to the neighboring country of Burundi. With the growing unrest that led to the Burundi Civil War, they emigrated to France in 1994. At the age 13 with her family, Rolland was settled in Burgundy in the small town of Cluny.

In October 1999, Sonia Rolland won the "Miss Burgundy" beauty contest that allowed her to compete for the Miss France 2000 title and at the age of 18 she was the first woman of African descent to win. At the Miss Universe 2000 pageant, which took place in Cyprus, Rolland was a top 10 semi-finalist, placing 9th overall.

Rolland once lived in Paris with Christophe Rocancourt, an impostor, confidence man and gentleman thief who scammed affluent people by masquerading as a French member of the Rockefeller family. They had a daughter together, named Tess. They announced their split on April 10, 2008. Rolland has another daughter, Kahina, with actor and director Jalil Lespert, who is her partner since 2009

At twenty years old after serious acting lessons with renowned actor and businessman Alain Delon, Rolland embarked for a new career as an actress. Following an unsettling incident during which she was attacked in the metro she took kickboxing classes that later proved advantageous as they helped her land the role of Léa in the television series Léa Parker that ran for two seasons from 2004 to 2006.[1]

Literary work[edit]

Rolland’ s first book was published in 2007 titled “Les gazelles n’ont pas peur du noir” which in English translates to “ Gazelles are not afraid of the dark”. The book is her testimony to her childhood in Rwanda, transition to a different culture, her modeling and acting career, her philanthropic work and her family. [2] Her next book was “Beauté Black” which was collaboration with Sandrine Jeanne-Rose, an expert in ethnic and black cosmetics and hair care. This collection of practical guidelines is mainly meant to reach women of African descent. The two beauty enthusiasts focus on three areas: the face, the body and most importantly the hair essentially afro-textured hair as it is an important subject in the black community.

Philanthropy[edit]

Rolland’s work is mostly concentrated in Rwanda where she focuses a lot on education, as it is one of the things children survivors of the Genocide have missed on.[3] She is currently collecting fund that will go towards building a school. With her new documentary “Rwanda Mon Amour” (Rwanda My Love)[4] in the works the former miss France is hoping to inspire other African nations to follow the example of Rwanda by encourage the people to participate in the ongoing changes but at the same time Rolland promises to be impartial and objective about the achievements of the country over last 20 years. The documentary is expected to make an appearance at the Cannes film festival. [5]

Filmography[edit]

Year Title Role Director Notes
2001 C'est pas facile... TV Series (1 Episode)
2002 Les pygmées de Carlo Désirée Radu Mihăileanu TV Movie
2004 Le p'tit curieux The optician Jean Marboeuf
2004-06 Léa Parker Léa Parker TV Series (50 Episodes)
2006 C'est beau une ville la nuit Transsexual dancer Richard Bohringer
2007 Les zygs, le secret des disparus Lise Jacques Fansten TV Movie
2009 Moloch Tropical Michaëlle Raoul Peck TV Movie
2010 Affaires étrangères Clara Lecuyer Vincenzo Marano TV Series (1 Episode)
2011 Les invincibles Vanessa Alexandre Castagnetti
Pierric Gantelmi d'Ille
TV Series (7 Episodes)
Midnight in Paris Josephine Baker Woody Allen Nominated - Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
2012 Toussaint Louverture Marie-Eugénie Sonthonax Philippe Niang TV Mini-Series (2 Episodes)
Désordres Marie Etienne Faure
2013 Nos chers voisins Sabrina TV Series (1 Episode)
The French Minister Nathalie Bertrand Tavernier
Chérif Ludivine Delaunay TV Series (1 Episode)
2014 Windows The Woman Jules Sitruk Short

External links[edit]

References[edit]

Preceded by
Mareva Galanter
Miss France
2000
Succeeded by
Élodie Gossuin