Hessler in January 2008
January 21, 1988
Rome, Lazio, Italy
|Nationality||Italian and American|
|Height||178 cm (5 ft 10 in)|
Hessler was born in Rome, Lazio, Italy, to John Hessler, an American, and Gabriella, an Italian. She lived in Rome until she was 8, then moved to Washington, D.C., her father's birthplace. She lived in Rockville, Maryland in her early teenage years. In 2002 she returned to Italy. She speaks Italian, English and French.
Hessler was the face of the DSL brand "Alice" (a service of Telefónica Europe) in both Germany and France until late October 2011. Telefónica Europe decided to terminate her contract due to her personal connections to, and public support for, the deposed Gaddafi family – stating that she had "failed to distance herself from her comments on the conflict in Libya." Hessler said that she had a "very beautiful love story" over a four-year period with Mutassim Gaddafi, one of the sons of Muammar Gaddafi, who was killed with his father following a U.N.-sanctioned airstrike and rebel ambush on Gaddafi's convoy in Libya. Hessler also stated the West had made a mistake in backing the rebels who ended Muammar Gaddafi's 42-year reign. "We, France and the United Kingdom, financed the rebels but people don't know what they are doing," Hessler told Italian magazine Diva e Donna, adding that she is disgusted by what is happening in Libya and that "the Gaddafi family is not how they are being depicted, they are normal people".
Hessler appeared in the 2005 film Christmas in Miami (Italian: Natale a Miami), along with Christian De Sica, and consequently her popularity soared. She plays Greek princess, Irina, in the 2008 Asterix at the Olympic Games (French: Astérix aux Jeux Olympiques), a film that also stars Alain Delon and Gérard Depardieu. She also plays the leading female role in Per una notte d'amore (English: For a Night of Love), which was filmed in Italy and released in 2008 as a two-part TV special, likewise in Cenerentola (2011), a similar project.
- "Vanessa Hessler". Fashion Model Directory. Retrieved December 10, 2012.
- "Libya Live Blog". Blogs. aljazeera.com. October 31, 2011. Retrieved December 10, 2012.
- Momtaz, Rym (November 1, 2011). "American Supermodel Defends Gadhafi Family, Loses Job". ABC News. American Broadcasting Company. Retrieved December 10, 2012.
- WWD Staff (February 19, 2008). "Fashion Scoops: Men About Town... Model Life... Restrictions Apply.." Women's Wear Daily. Fairchild Fashion Media. Retrieved December 10, 2012.