244


Order now
Numéro
20

Interview : Deva Cassel, rising star of fashion and cinema

Cinema

Nineteen-year-old Deva, daughter of Vincent Cassel and Monica Bellucci, is following in her parents’ movie-star footsteps with a first film, The Beautiful Summer, that has just been released in Italy. What’s more, the Dior fashion and beauty ambassador will soon be appearing in the Netflix adaptation of The Leopard, the celebrated novel that made cinema history in the hands of Luchino Visconti.

  • Wool and silk shantung vest and trousers, Dior.

1/2

Interview with Deva Cassel, daughter's Monica Bellucci and Vincent Cassel

 

NUMÉRO: What childhood memories do you have of the creative process? Was there a moment when you realized you would pursue a career in the arts? 

DEVA CASSEL: I’ve loved art ever since I was a small child, whether painting, music, or dance. Through that, I understood that I was sensitive to imaginary and artistic worlds. But there was never a Eureka moment. I started out as a model, because the world of images has always intrigued me. One day I accompanied my mother on a shoot, and the photographer wanted to take a few pictures of me. It felt very familiar and natural being in front of camera, and I had a lot of fun. I knew then that I wanted to continue down that path.

 

What do you particularly like about fashion today? Its creativity? Its craziness? What attracts me most is creativity and talent. 

The world of fashion has inspired me since I was a little girl, because I always felt it was important to externalize one’s ideas. Through fashion, which was often visionary, you can construct a narrative of human history. 

 

What’s your relationship with the house of Dior? 

I have enormous respect for Dior and for the brand’s unique heritage. Maria Grazia Chiuri mixes influences from both France and Italy, and all of that speaks to me because I belong to both cultures. 

 

Which pieces struck you most in Dior’s new collection? 

The deconstructed blouses and of course all the dresses and outfits that can be worn for chic and cool everyday looks. 

 

Deva Cassel wears Dior.

At the age of 19, you are a representative of a generation that grew up in a period of political and environmental crisis. Do you feel angry or militant? 

Something that really worries my generation is the future of the planet’s marine ecosystems. Everyone knows that human activity is behind ocean pollution and that the plastic swallowed by fish eventually ends up on our plates. Recent studies have found microplastics inside the human body. We need to wake up to the impact we’re having on the planet, and fast, because the way we live our everyday lives affects the future of our world.

 

Which causes would you like to defend and why? 

The fight against violence towards women and children. It’s a subject I feel very strongly about. It’s completely anachronistic that today we still have to fight so hard for basic, elementary rights.

 

Your first film, Laura Luchetti’s The Beautiful Summer, has just come out in Italy. How did your movie career begin? 

Cinema has fascinated me since childhood, but I refused the idea of working in the business because I didn’t want to do the same thing as my parents. Then, as time went on, I came to understand that it intrigued me, that it involved things I  knew about already but which nonetheless took me out of my comfort zone. Laura Luchetti spotted me in a series of shorts made for a fashion series. We did several auditions, and a few weeks later she called me to say the part was mine. It was a moment I’ll never forget. 

 

Which character do you play, and how did you work on the part? 

My character is Amelia, a young model in the 1930s. She’s furtive, playful, sensual, and provocative. She has lots of complex emotional layers, but we worked on that in preparatory workshops with Laura and all the other actors, which allowed me to gain confidence in my acting abilities and arrive on set the first day knowing exactly what to do and what to expect.

  • Deva Cassel wears Dior.

1/2

The Leopard, the new Netflix show starring Deva Cassel

 

You’ve also been cast in the Netflix adaptation of The Leopard. Will acting become your main activity? 

I don’t know yet… I’m too attached to fashion to completely leave the business or to have it take second place. I plan on doing both for the foreseeable future.

 

What advice do your parents give you? What’s it like talking about a role with Vincent Cassel or Monica Bellucci? 

My parents leave me to make up my own mind. The most frequent advice is “Sure, go for it, but always keep your head on your shoulders” and “Enjoy what you do.” I think it could be a lot of fun to find myself on the same set as my parents, shooting a movie or a series together. We sometimes discuss the idea. I’m open to it, but not just yet, since I feel that I still have a lot of road to travel first. The primary tool for a model or an actor is the body. 

 

What’s your relationship with yours? Do you think the pressure on young people to conform to certain ideals of beauty is beginning to change? 

I have a very healthy relationship with my body. I have to, it’s my only medium. Paying attention to our bodies brings healing and regeneration. It’s through our body consciousness that we remember who we really are, and it’s quite wonderful to be able to create with something so simple and yet so complex. I think the pressure is still there today, but perhaps people pay it less attention. Today’s “criteria” are constantly changing and have infinite variety. Our uniqueness is what makes us all special, and people are starting to take heed of that again. Where do you see yourself in ten years’ time? Ten years is a long way away – I don’t even know what I’ll be doing in a few weeks! Wherever I end up, I hope I’ll be happy

Deva Cassel wears Dior.

What’s your relationship with yours? Do you think the pressure on young people to conform to certain ideals of beauty is beginning to change? 

I have a very healthy relationship with my body. I have to, it’s my only medium. Paying attention to our bodies brings healing and regeneration. It’s through our body consciousness that we remember who we really are, and it’s quite wonderful to be able to create with something so simple and yet so complex. I think the pressure is still there today, but perhaps people pay it less attention. Today’s “criteria” are constantly changing and have infinite variety. Our uniqueness is what makes us all special, and people are starting to take heed of that again. Where do you see yourself in ten years’ time? Ten years is a long way away – I don’t even know what I’ll be doing in a few weeks! Wherever I end up, I hope I’ll be happy

 

The TV show The Leopard by Richard Warlow and Benji Walters wiith Deva Cassel be released in 2024 on Netflix.