who is manal?
One afternoon, I decided to send a message to Manal Issa on facebook. I had seen her in Peur de Rien, a movie directed by Danielle Arbid and where Manal plays a young libanese student in Paris, discovering a whole new and free life... I was so touched by her grace, her personality, and her story which reminded me my university years!
To my surprise - you can call it chance or "mektoub", Manal answered straight away and we chatted for a while... this is the Magic of social networks really! Then we met a few hours later in a café in place de la Nation, in Paris.
That's where I told her about our project, our vision of Woman and Beauty, the issues we wanted to address, and how she could help us to embody a certain idea of Beauty. She agreed to help us within a second, and with so much enthusiasm... and 15 days later, we met for a photoshoot in the beautiful Parisian apartment of a friend!
She was photographed by a friend, Maeva Delacroix, and was filmed by another friend, Mai Hua: that's how the first episode of our series of portraits "about Hair and Women" was born!
With so much spontaneity and simplicity, Manal told us about her career, about how she became an actress and held a first role (for which she was nominated for the Césars!), and about how she lived - and still lives - between two countries, France and Lebanon.
She talked about her relationship with her curly and dry hair: "My hair, well... they are here!" She told us that as a little girl, she was always screaming as her mother (who had straight hair and didn't understand that "you don't brush curly hair!") was brushing her hair . Then, growing up, she finally understood that she "had very beautiful hair" and that she could play with it.