By Eric Spitznagel


The U.S. has come a long way in the last decade. Same-sex marriage is now legal in 19 states. Medical marijuana is legal (with a “note from your doctor”) in 23 states. But if there’s one thing we still have no tolerance for, it’s lady nipples. Even worse if those nipples belong to a French seductress like Eva Green, ass-kicking star of blockbusters like Casino Royale and 300: Rise of an Empire.

A poster for her new film, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For — in theaters August 22 — was banned by the MPAA for, in their words, the “curve of under breast and dark nipple/areola circle visible through sheer gown.” And then a commercial slated to air on ABC was pulled for more or less the same reason. Too much Eva Green nipplage.

Green recently said that boobs “have never killed anyone” (though she did add that suffocation is a possibility). I called up Green recently, and she talked quite a bit more about the controversy — and about her obsession with stuffed dead animals.

ESQUIRE.COM: I have a lot to ask you about Sin City, but we should probably start by talking about taxidermy.

EVA GREEN: I’m sorry?

ESQ: I heard that you’re a repeat customer at Deyrolle in Paris, the taxidermy shop.

EG: [Laughs.] Oh yes, yes, that’s right.

ESQ: I was there decades ago, when I was doing the backpacking-across-Europe thing. The place is insane.

EG: It’s a very beautiful shop. It’s like being in a fairy tale or something.

ESQ: I still see that spiral staircase in my dreams.

EG: Me too, me too. [Laughs.]

ESQ: Are you more of a Deyrolle window shopper, or do you spend serious money on taxidermy?

EG: Well, I have a bit of a problem. I haven’t visited them in a while, because it can be dangerous. I walk in and see a stuffed head and I’m like, “Oh, it’s calling to me. It wants to go home with me.”

ESQ: Sweet Moses.

EG: “It’s got such sad eyes. It would be happier with me.”

ESQ: That is simultaneously the best and the creepiest thing I’ve ever heard.

EG: Deyrolle is a dangerous place for me. I make some bad decisions when I’m there.

ESQ: How close have you come to buying a rhino? Be honest!

EG: A rhino? I would love one.

ESQ: No you wouldn’t.

EG: That’s a spectacular idea actually.

ESQ: I was joking.

EG: But I’m quite serious. I think it’d be lovely to own a taxidermy rhino. Don’t tempt me. The last thing I bought was a marabou bird. I don’t know if you’re familiar, but it’s kind of a weird-looking but beautiful vulture or something.

ESQ: Isn’t it a stork?

EG: It might be, but it looks like a vulture. It’s quite large, it’s almost five feet tall. And I believe it’s called an “undertaker bird” for some reason.

ESQ: What else is in your personal collection? I’ve heard you have a few insects and skulls.

EG: Some of that, but mostly birds. I love peacocks actually. I’ve got an albino peacock, which is completely white, and a normal peacock, so they look like a beautiful couple. I’ve got an auroch, which is like an ancestor of the bull.

ESQ: You’ve got a whole bull?

EG: No, no, just the head. That’s more than enough. [Laughs.] It’s really special. I also have lots of birds and owls and stuff.

ESQ: Do you keep them in a special room? Some place where they won’t freak out guests?

EG: [Laughs.] Yes, that is an issue.

ESQ: You have a dinner party and there’s a dead rhino standing there. It’s bound to make people uncomfortable.

EG: Well, I keep most of them in my living room. I don’t really hide anything. It’s like a zoo in my house.

ESQ: A dead zoo.

EG: Yes, I suppose so. A dead zoo. [Laughs.]

ESQ: I have no idea how you’ve gotten this reputation for being dark and gothic.

EG: See, I don’t consider any of this to be morbid or anything. It’s just… it’s really hard to explain. I don’t know. [Laughs.] It’s hard.

ESQ: Vanessa, your character on the series Penny Dreadful, also has a thing for taxidermy.

EG: Oh yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

ESQ: Was that just a wonderful coincidence? Or did you show up on the set and go, “Happy day?”

EG: It was a pure coincidence. But I wasn’t disappointed, obviously.

ESQ: Was there anything among the taxidermied animals that you took home?

EG: This is kind of funny. Remember the monkey that Peter was working on?

ESQ: Oh yeah. The one Vanessa told him to name, because all stuffed animals should have names?

EG: Right, right. [Penny Dreadful creator] John Logan gave it to me. It just looked like such a sad little monkey. And he said, “That’s for you. Take that weird, sad little monkey home.”

ESQ: And you did?

EG: Of course! He’s in my home in London.

ESQ: Vanessa said something about putting mirrors behind the glass eyes of her dead animals. That’s not how it works in actual taxidermy, is it?

EG: I don’t think so. I should ask John Logan. But I don’t believe it is, no. None of mine have mirror eyes.

ESQ: Good. Now I can sleep.

EG: Maybe I’ll get mirror eyes for my rhino.

ESQ: You’re seriously considering getting a taxidermy rhino?

EG: Yes, definitely. It’s a good idea. I’m not kidding.

ESQ: Where would it go in your house? The kitchen or the dining room or the master bedroom?

EG: I’m not sure. A rhino isn’t a small creature. I need more room than I have now. I might need to buy a castle before I invest in any rhinos. Or I could just remove my bull, my auroch, and put the rhino in that room instead.

ESQ: Some actresses obsess over where to put their award statues. You’re more concerned with taxidermy placement.

EG: Well, awards take up a lot less space than a rhino.

ESQ: We should talk about Sin City. This is far from your first green-screen movie. Does it get easier? After big action films like 300: Rise of an Empire, are you accustomed to the unreality?

EG: This one was greener than ever in some weird ways. We had no furniture, no walls, no windows. Robert [Rodriguez] and Frank [Miller] were very faithful to the comic book, and they used it as a storyboard. So I knew what it would look like in the end. But that means we were doing scenes with nothing but your acting partner. That’s all there was in front of you.

ESQ: Did you try to visualize what the world around you looked like?

EG: No, I didn’t bother with that. It’s really just about the other actor. You have to focus on them. To know that there’s a wall on your right and a clock to your left, that doesn’t make any difference. In some ways, it’s like theater. You’re not thinking about the props onstage. All of your energy and focus goes into the other actors. That’s all that’s carrying you through.

ESQ: Have you watched the new Sin City with an audience yet?

EG: No. I’m seeing the film tonight for the first time, with people. [Moans.]

ESQ: You don’t seem all that enthusiastic.

EG: I hate it. I try to procrastinate as long as I can, until I absolutely have to see it. It’s no reflection on the film, it’s just me. I don’t watch anything I’m in. Not even on set. I won’t go over to the monitor to watch what we’ve just shot. It’s too terrible. I think I’m just very self-conscious.


ESQ: Are you sick of talking about Nipplegate yet?

EG: Nipplegate?

ESQ: The movie poster and ABC commercial that have been banned because of your nipples.

EG: [Laughs.] Is that what they’re calling it? Nipplegate?

ESQ: I don’t think so. I’m pretty sure Janet Jackson still has dibs. I just can’t think of a non-stupid way to bring it up.

EG: It really is insane. With the poster, I don’t really understand what it was all about. You don’t see much, do you? It’s only suggested. It’s not full on at all. And then there’s the trailer, which is just a lot of shadows, so again you don’t see anything. The whole thing is just confounding and weird and stupid.

ESQ: It’s fascinating because you’ve come full circle. Your first film, The Dreamers, came out about a decade ago, and it had its own nipple controversy.

EG: That’s right, I’d forgotten about that.

ESQ: But that was probably more to do with the whole sibling incest thing than the boobs.

EG: Well yeah, that had something to do with it. It was a very different film than Sin City. With The Dreamers, it was young kids expressing themselves, and discovering their sexuality. And this is more…

ESQ: It’s pulp noir.

EG: Yeah. But it’s not vulgar. That’s what I don’t get about it. It’s not depicted as realistic. It’s art. It’s like when you go to a museum, and there’s a painting of a naked woman. It’s not raw sex. It’s an artistic rendering.

ESQ: And if the poster freaks people out, wait ’til they see the movie.

EG: I know, right? They should take it as a warning. The poster’s incredibly tame by comparison. They’ll have a heart attack when they see the film.

ESQ: Why is the United States still so terrified of women’s nipples? What’s wrong with us? As an outsider, do you have any perspective?

EG: I honestly have no clue. It’s kind of bizarre. I think they should be more worried about weapons. Maybe spend more time on that problem.

ESQ: Nipples aren’t killing children.

EG: Exactly. Nipples aren’t killing children. They should be more concerned about the wars that are happening. There’s so much violence in the world right now. There are so many legitimate things to be upset about besides nipples.

ESQ: I read somewhere that while shooting your sex scene in 300, you ended up with a lot of bruises.

EG: Oh yeah.

ESQ: I’m afraid to ask. Bruises where? Like, on what… body part?

EG: It was mostly on my back. I bruise very easily, so it wasn’t a big deal.

ESQ: Did you get any sex bruises while working on Sin City?

EG: Not really. I didn’t move much in this film, weirdly. It was an easy shoot. The last time I got bruises from acting was on Penny Dreadful. There’s an episode where my character is possessed, and I’m thrashing about and getting really banged up. I was totally covered in bruises after that. Like, everywhere.

ESQ: Did that make it awkward to go out in public?

EG: Well, it’s funny, because after that shoot I had to fly out immediately to do two days of press junkets to promote 300. And I had to wear very conservative clothes because the makeup artist was like, “These bruises are insane. I can’t possibly cover these.”

ESQ: How conservative?

EG: There was one junket where I had this shirt with big, frilly, ruffley things on the wrists and neck. It was just because I was covered in bruises. It’s quite funny. That one episode of TV was so much more physical and violent and bruise-inducing than 300 or anything else.

ESQ: Do you prefer doing your own stunts?

EG: No. If I can avoid doing stunts, I will. I don’t want to die just for a movie. It’s not worth it. They’ve got CGI. They’ve got professional stunt people. There are ways of doing it without me. I get no pleasure putting my life in jeopardy just to get the shot. Life is too short for that nonsense.

Source: Esquire

  • Jackie
    Posted on August 07, 2014

    Rhino is a brilliant idea, correct, NIPPLES are not killing children, and oh sometimes I am exhausted at my people. I am going to gather a group of sheer dressed, incredible women and make my own club. Oh and there will be posters! Believe that! Get it Eva Green! Go Girl!

  • Philius
    Posted on August 07, 2014

    This has to be the best thing we have discovered of Eva’s personal life yet. Stuffed animals? REALLY? I was always so mesmerized by them. I would probably tear up walking in her house. Not that I wouldn’t have anyway lol. A sheer dress club sounds nice, Jackie. I don’t have boobs but I still own nipples and I hope that’s enough to shock your fellow americans. I am in.

  • Jackie
    Posted on August 07, 2014

    Oh Philius my friend, we do not discriminate against any type of nipples (in our club). We accept you, one of us! Weeeeee

  • edenLiao
    Posted on August 12, 2014

    love this interview!!!!

  • Latest Photos

    Click here to view our extensive gallery of Eva photos.
    Current Projects
    Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (2016)
    Role: Miss Peregrine
    Director: Tim Burton
    Status: US Release December 25, 2016
    16-year-old Jacob follows clues that take him to a mysterious island, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine's School for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores the abandoned bedrooms and hallways, he discovers that its former occupants were far more than peculiar; they possessed incredible powers. And they may still be alive.

    Penny Dreadful (2014-2016)
    Role: Vanessa Ives
    Creator: John Logan
    Status: Season 3 Premiere 2016
    A frightening psychological thriller that weaves together classic horror origin stories into a new adult drama.
    Official Photos Facebook Twitter YouTube IMDb

    The Salvation (2014)
    Role: Madelaine
    Director: Kristian Levring
    Status: Now on Blu-ray & DVD
    In 1870s America, a peaceful American settler kills his family's murderer which unleashes the fury of a notorious gang leader. His cowardly fellow townspeople then betray him, forcing him to hunt down the outlaws alone.
    Photos IMDb Facebook Instagram
    Site Exclusives

    Check out Part I, Part II and Part III our 2011 exclusive Q&A as well as Part I and Part II of our 2013 exclusive Q&A and Part I, Part II and Part III of our 2014 exclusive Q&A with Eva Green to find out more about the actress and her work.

    Click here to read additional EGW exclusive interviews.
    Google Ad
    Latest Fan Art

    Click here to view our fan art archive containing over 6,000 pieces of Eva drawings, icons, wallpapers & more.
    Family Sites
    Claire FoyEddie RedmayneGaspard UllielGemma ArtertonKate HudsonLea SeydouxNaomi Watts

    Elite Affiliates

    Adele ExarchopoulosAmy AdamsAnna FrielAnna TorvEleanor TomlinsonEmma StoneEwan McGregorIsabel LucasJenna Louise ColemanJessica ChastainKate WinsletMads MikkelsenMarion CotillardMegan FoxMelanie ThierryNastassja KinskiOrlando BloomRichard MaddenRose ByrneRuth WilsonSandra BullockZachary Quinto

    Top Affiliates
    http://Angel Coulby
    http://Charlize Theron
    http://Crystal Reed
    http://Dakota Johnson
    http://Diora Baird
    http://Emilia Clarke
    http://Helen Mirren
    http://Jennifer Lawrence
    http://Jude Law
    http://Katie Cassidy
    http://Laura Ramsey
    http://Lisa Edelstein
    http://Margot Robbie
    http://Matt Smith
    http://Michelle Dockery
    http://Rachael Taylor
    http://Robert Downey Jr.
    http://Rooney Mara
    http://Serinda Swan
    http://Sophia Bush

    Eva on TV
    Site Information
    Maintained by: M, G & Stef (contact us)
    Staff: Carol, Eden & Jackie
    Since: April 7, 2004
    Online now:
    Hits today:

    Special thanks to Annie, Claudia, Nicole, Sebastian, Clara and Kev for all of their content contributions.

    eXTReMe Tracker
    Site Disclaimer
    Eva Green Web is a non-profit fansite. We are in no way affiliated with Eva Green, her management, her agency and etcetera. All photos and media are being used under the Fair Copyright Law 107 and are copyright to their respective owners. No infringement is intended.
    Our Latest Tweets