Vincent Cassel

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Vincent Cassel
Vincent Cassel le moine.jpg
Cassel in 2011
Born Vincent Crochon
(1966-11-23) 23 November 1966 (age 47)
Paris, France
Occupation Actor, director
Years active 1993–present
Spouse(s) Monica Bellucci
 (m. 1999; separated 2013)
Children 2
Parents Jean-Pierre Cassel
Sabine Litique

Vincent Cassel[1] (born Vincent Crochon, 23 November 1966) is a Cesar Award-winning French actor best known to English-speaking audiences through his film performances in Ocean's Twelve and Ocean's Thirteen, as well as Black Swan. Cassel is also renowned for playing the infamous French bank-robber and folk hero, Jacques Mesrine in Mesrine: Killer Instinct and Mesrine: Public Enemy Number One.

Early life and family[edit]

Cassel was born Vincent Crochon[2] on 23 November 1966 in Paris, France, to Sabine Litique, and French actor Jean-Pierre Cassel (born Jean-Pierre Crochon).[3][4] Cassel's brother, Mathias, is a rapper with the group Assassin under the name "Rockin' Squat".[5] His half-sister, Cécile Cassel, is an actress.[6]


Cassel's breakthrough role was in Mathieu Kassovitz's critically acclaimed film La Haine where he played a troubled youth from the deprived outskirts of Paris. He has gone on to act in a variety of films such as the moody L'Appartement (with Monica Bellucci before they married),[5] the violent Dobermann, the genre-bending Le Pacte des Loups (in English, Brotherhood of the Wolf), and the highly controversial Irréversible, where he appears fully nude (with Monica Bellucci after they married).

Cassel has also done a number of English-language films, such as Ocean's Twelve and Ocean's Thirteen, Derailed, Birthday Girl, The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc, Elizabeth, Eastern Promises, and Shrek (as the voice of Monsieur Hood), and in the Portuguese-language, Brazilian film Adrift (À Deriva). In 2006, he appeared in Sheitan, in which he played a shepherd who carries out satanic rituals. In 2008, he appeared in two movies about Jacques Mesrine, who was France's "public enemy number one" in the seventies.[5] Cassel received the 2009 Cesar award for best actor for his performance in Mesrine directed by Jean-Francois Richet.

An early appearance on British television was as Nicole's boyfriend in the 1994 Renault Clio advert which was used in the UK.[5]

In October 2008, Cassel was signed to be the face of a new Yves Saint Laurent men's fragrance. The new fragrance, La Nuit de l'Homme, was launched worldwide in March 2009.

French film historian Tim Palmer describes Cassel as one of the most charismatic and idiosyncratic of all France's contemporary stars, working in both popular and more intellectual modes of cinema, typically playing characters that veer unpredictably between positive/alluring and negative/grotesque—often, in fact, within a single role and performance.[7]

In 2009, he made his debut as a singer on Zap Mama's album ReCreation, singing alongside them on the singles "Paroles, Paroles" and "Non, Non, Non".

He played Thomas Leroy in Darren Aronofsky's critically acclaimed Black Swan (2010), alongside Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis.

Personal life[edit]

Cassel met Italian actress Monica Bellucci on the set of their 1996 film The Apartment.[8] They married in 1999,[8] and have two daughters, Deva (born 12 September 2004)[9] and Léonie (born 21 May 2010).[10] Cassel and Bellucci announced their separation in August 2013.[8]

Cassel has a passion for Capoeira and displayed his talent in the movie Ocean's Twelve.[11]

Besides his native French, Cassel speaks English, Portuguese, Italian and basic conversational Russian which he learned for his role in Eastern Promises.[12]


Title Year Role Notes
Métisse 1993 Max
La Haine 1995 Vinz Nominated – César Award for Best Actor
Nominated – César Award for Most Promising Actor
Jefferson in Paris 1995 Camille Desmoulins
L'élève 1996 Julien
L'Appartement 1996 Max
Dobermann 1997 Yann le Pentrec (Dobermann)
Come mi vuoi 1997 Pasquale
Elizabeth 1998 Duc d'Anjou
The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc 1999 Gilles de Rais
Guest House Paradiso 1999 Gino Bolognese
Crimson Rivers 2000 Max Kerkerian
Brotherhood of the Wolf 2001 Jean-François de Morangias
Shrek 2001 Monsieur Hood Voice only
Birthday Girl 2001 Alexei
Sur mes lèvres 2001 Paul
Ice Age 2002 Diego Voice only (French-language version)
Irréversible 2002 Marcus Also co-producer
The Reckoning 2003 Lord De Guise
Blueberry 2004 Mike S. Blueberry
Agents Secrets 2004 Brisseau
Ocean's Twelve 2004 François Toulour
Derailed 2005 LaRoche
Sheitan 2006 Joseph Also producer
Ocean's Thirteen 2007 François Toulour
Eastern Promises 2007 Kirill
Sa Majesté Minor 2007 Satyre
Mesrine 2008 Jacques Mesrine César Award for Best Actor
Lumiere Award for Best Actor
Étoiles d'Or Award for Best Actor
Tokyo International Film Festival Award for Best Actor
Lascars 2009 Tony Merguez Voice only
Adrift (À Deriva) 2009 Matias
Our Day Will Come 2010 Patrick Also producer
Black Swan 2010 Thomas Leroy Nominated – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
The Monk 2011 Capucino Ambrosio
A Dangerous Method 2011 Otto Gross
Trance 2013 Franck
Beauty and the Beast 2014 La Bête
Child 44 2015 Doctor Zurabin


  1. ^ French pronunciation: ​[vɛ̃sɑ̃ kasɛl].
  2. ^
  3. ^ France-Presse, Agence (21 April 2007). "Jean-Pierre Cassel, 74, Actor Who Starred in '60s French Comedies, Dies". The New York Times. 
  4. ^ Secher, Benjamin (28 July 2009). "Vincent Cassel interview for Mesrine". The Daily Telegraph (London). 
  5. ^ a b c d "Vincent Cassel". Oh No They Didn't!. 28 July 2009. Retrieved 9 March 2011. 
  6. ^ Annabel Rivkin (20 April 2009). "French Fancy: Cécile Cassel". ES Magazine. Retrieved 9 March 2011. 
  7. ^ Palmer, Tim (2011). Brutal Intimacy: Analyzing Contemporary French Cinema, Wesleyan University Press, Middleton CT. ISBN 0-8195-6827-9.
  8. ^ a b c "Monica Bellucci, Vincent Cassel To Divorce After 14 Years". Huffington Post. 26 August 2013. Retrieved 2013-08-26. 
  9. ^ Stephen M. Silverman (14 September 2004). "Passion Actress Bellucci Has Baby Girl". People. Retrieved 9 March 2011. 
  10. ^ Peter Mikelbank (24 May 2010). "Monica Bellucci Welcomes Daughter Léonie". People. Retrieved 9 March 2011. 
  11. ^ Thelma Adams (13 December 2010). "Vincent Cassel: A Q&A With the Black Swan Star". Huffington Post. USA. Retrieved 9 March 2011. 
  12. ^ Elizabeth Day (4 February 2012). "Vincent Cassel: 'You can't escape from what you are'". The Guardian. Retrieved 6 February 2012. 

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