×
Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Why Lady Margot Fenring From Dune 2 Looks So Familiar

If you thought Denis Villeneuve's "Dune" has a huge, star-studded cast, prepare yourself for "Dune: Part Two" — which adds even more huge names to the roster. Anya Taylor-Joy, Florence Pugh, Austin Butler, Christopher Walken, and Tim Blake Nelson join the second installment of the Frank Herbert adaptation, adding considerable star power to a group that already includes Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Zendaya, Josh Brolin, and Javier Bardem. French actor Léa Seydoux might not be as big of a name compared to her co-stars, but she's a film veteran who's appeared in other major franchises. In "Dune: Part Two," she plays Lady Margot Fenring, a member of the sisterhood of the Bene Gesserit.

The Parisian-born performer has been acting since she made her film debut in 2006 (in the European comedy "Girlfriends"), and whether you love foreign arthouse flicks or you're a longtime fan of the James Bond movies, you've seen her before. Here's why Lady Margot Fenring looks so familiar.

Inglourious Basterds (2009)

One of Léa Seydoux's first big roles outside her native France came in 2009 with Quentin Tarantino's revisionist history "Inglourious Basterds." But you could be forgiven if you forgot the actor was in that sprawling film. She's only in the movie for its iconic opening scene, playing Charlotte LaPadite.

At the beginning of "Inglourious Basterds," high-ranking S.S. officer Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz) visits the LaPadite family farm to investigate the disappearance of the French-Jewish Dreyfuss family. He has an extended conversation about the missing fugitives with the family's patriarch, Perrier LaPadite (Denis Ménochet). Initially, Charlotte and her sisters watch anxiously as their father speaks to Landa. They are eventually sent outside after Landa asks if the two men can continue their conversation privately. This is for the best; Landa and his fellow officers destroy the LaPadite home when it's revealed that the Dreyfuss family is underneath the floorboards. Seydoux's role is small but vital, especially when Charlotte shares a significant look with her father right in front of Landa, indicating there's more to this quiet family home than meets the eye.  

Midnight in Paris (2011)

Léa Seydoux's role in Woody Allen's 2011 nostalgia comedy "Midnight in Paris" is small but crucial to the movie's narrative. The film follows Hollywood screenwriter and aspiring novelist Gil Pender (Owen Wilson) as he visits Paris with his fiancée Inez (Rachel McAdams) and her family. While they're there, Gil discovers that he can explore the city in a completely different way; he can travel through time and experience Paris in the 1920s, rubbing shoulders with luminaries like Ernest Hemingway (Corey Stoll), F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald (Tom Hiddleston and Alison Pill), and Gertrude Stein (Kathy Bates).

So, where does Seydoux come in? She plays Gabrielle, who sells antiques at local markets and (like Gil) fantasizes about Paris in the 1920s. Ultimately, Gil decides to leave his Los Angeles-based life behind, end things with Inez (who, beyond being self-absorbed and sometimes cruel, is cheating on him with Michael Sheen's obnoxious Paul), and by chance meets Gabrielle on one of Paris' most iconic bridges, the Pont Alexandre III. When they realize they love Paris in the rain, they walk off into the night together, suggesting a sweet future for the two in the city of love.

Blue is the Warmest Color (2013)

Directed and written by the French-Tunisian filmmaker Abdellatif Kechiche, the 2013 drama "Blue is the Warmest Color" centers around a young French woman named Adéle (Adèle Exarchopoulos) and her unexpected romance with Emma (Léa Seydoux), a painter and free spirit. Adéle is exploring her own sexuality when she meets Emma, who is openly queer. Before long, the two strike up a relationship that lasts years. Though they eventually start living together, there's trouble in paradise; while Adéle isn't particularly career-driven and is perfectly happy to teach at an elementary school, Emma is a night owl who loves to party and wants to become a famous and successful artist.

Unfortunately, the legacy of "Blue is the Warmest Color" is complicated due to allegations made by both Seydoux and Exarchopoulos regarding Keciche's on-set behavior — and that's a shame because this story about two women falling in love, proudly building a life together, and then parting ways while honoring the relationship they had is quite beautiful. Seydoux and Exarchopoulos are excellent together on-screen, and their honest and raw performances as Emma and Adéle are incredibly poignant.

The French Dispatch (2021)

Wes Anderson's 2021 film "The French Dispatch" is told in separate vignettes — and one of them, titled "The Concrete Masterpiece," features Léa Seydoux as Simone, a prison guard who begins a relationship with inmate and artist Moses Rosenthaler (Benicio del Toro). When Moses paints a risqué picture of Simone nude, one of his fellow inmates, an art dealer named Julien Cadazio (Adrien Brody) buys it and displays it when he's released, catapulting Moses and Simone to unimaginable fame. Meanwhile, Moses is having trouble coming up with his next piece but begins painting frescoes on the prison wall, thanks to Simone's encouragement. Julian eventually purchases the prison wall and arranges to have it airlifted out of the facility; Moses is released and Simone is now a wealthy woman thanks to her role as his muse. The two then go their separate ways.

"The French Dispatch" is stocked with some of Anderson's regulars as well as newcomers — including Seydoux's eventual "Dune: Part Two" co-star Timothée Chalamet — and she fits in perfectly, adapting beautifully to the writer-director's very particular style. The actor only appears in "The Concrete Masterpiece," but she makes an impression on the audience.

Spectre (2015) & No Time to Die (2021)

If none of Léa Seydoux's other high-profile projects are ringing any bells for you, you probably recognize the actor from her compelling multi-film role as Madeleine Swann in the James Bond franchise. She appeared in 2015's "Spectre" alongside Daniel Craig, and in 2021, reprised the role in "No Time to Die," Craig's final turn as the British superspy.

Seydoux bucks typical "Bond girl" conventions by having sizable roles in two films. Not only that, she also helps set up a possible future narrating; Madeleine has Bond's baby, a little girl named Mathilde whom we meet at the end of "No Time to Die." Beyond that, the character is a psychiatrist whose father is antagonist Mr. White (Jesper Christensen), who is a part of the criminal organization known as SPECTRE. Bond protects her from their clutches in "Spectre." Despite 007 believing that she ultimately betrays him in "No Time to Die," the pair's relationship is a central throughline of both films.