Meet Versailles’ Marie Thérèse, with whom we have spent some time in the Parisian nightclub Le Tigre. “When it comes to choosing projects, I don’t want to limit myself in any way.” The French actress attributes her open-mindedness and curiosity to her childhood, which she spent primarily in Holland before living in London and Paris. 

This geographical and cultural diversity ( she speaks five languages!) translates into a creative
versatility that allows Lasowski to continually recreate herself. Lasowski celebrates her mutability, saying,“People never tend to recognize me from one project to the next, which I take as a hugecompliment because it means I’m doing my job right.”
Her manifold cultural inf luences cultivated an ability to embrace a lack of finitude. “There are a lot of
things that define me; I’m more interested in variation than repeating something I’ve done in the past,”
she explains. “In that way I am quite anti-definition.”

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Elisa Lasowski, Photography by Julian Marshall

Lasowski often seeks opportunities to tell the stories of people who don’t have a voice because of political or social reasons. In the film Hyena, for example, she played Ariana, a victim of human trafficking: a subject that Lasowski cares about deeply. After she started working on the film, she began researching reports about the real story of girl the film was based on, which led to an even deeper personal link with the character. Through Lasowski, Ariana transformed from a statistic
into a human whose story demands to be heard.
Difficult roles like Ariana don’t intimidate Lasowski, especially if she can complicate the stereotypes assigned to women and femininity. “Playing strong women has always been something that I found attractive,” she says, “and it can take on different forms.” In Versailles, which chronicles King Louis XIV’s lavish enjoyment of his absolute monarchal rule in 17th century France. Lasowski plays the queen Marie Thérèse, Louis XIV’s first wife. Through her research, Lasowski discovered that the Queen was quite a strong person in her own right, saying that “It was understated
strength, but it was definitely there.” This propensity to portray resilient women ref lects Lasowski’s
character both on- and off-screen: “When I play the role of a strong woman, it releases the drive to fight that I have within me.”

The full story and interview by Amelia Rina  are published in the 2nd Platea print issue available online & at selected stores. Photography by Julian Marshall.