Quotes by Isabella Rossellini

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You dont do an experimental film to become rich, so the people who are involved are involved because they enjoy the creative aspect of it. more...

If you go to a therapist, they say, 'Are you sure? How do you feel about your wrinkles?' And I say, 'I don't know, because I don't really see them.' I see my hands, but I don't see my face, so it's not a torment. I only see it for five minutes in the morning when I brush my teeth! When you read women's magazines you always read about this drama of getting old, about anti-aging cream and plastic surgery and whatever else. But I think if you're independent, like I have grown to be, it's welcome. more...

If you're sad and you like beer, I'm your lady, ... The Saddest Music in the World. more...

Mama wrote a letter to my father saying' I want to work with you' and she ended the letter saying' in Italian I can only say ti amo( I love you)' and of course the press used that to say women are sexual predators, in 1949 they made a first film together,' Stromboli', and they fell in love and my mother became pregnant with my brother Roberto before she could obtain a divorce. more...

My father used to say that you could only access culture before cinema by learning to read and write, but that once cinema was invented, knowledge was available to anybody. more...

I don't think a Hollywood actor is safe from acting in the rain: it all depends on the film. more...

I think my mother became the muse because she had everything when she was in Hollywood: she had the marriage, the success, the money, all the films she wanted to do and yet even her, she had a longing and wanted to work with a film that had meaning, something more profound. And I think that was very touching to father. more...

Women who stay true to themselves are always more interesting and beautiful to me: women like Frida Kahlo, Georgia O'Keeffe and Anna Magnani - women who have style, chic, allure and elegance. They didn't submit to any standard of beauty - they defined it. more...

If we are completely honest with ourselves, everyone has a dark side to their personalities. more...

Food is a big part of my culture, so everyone knows how to cook. When I came to America and asked a babysitter to softboil an egg for my son and she didn't know how, I was shocked. more...

But I don't really see myself as a role model. I'm not a dictator, or someone who wants to be adored! more...

But my mother loved The Elephant Man, and my father gave David Lynch a scholarship to study in Rome. more...

I didn't want to become an actress because the competition with my mother would have been to much to live up to. more...

Before Darwin, our world was very religious. People saw altruism as something given by God for us to be good so that we could go to Paradise. more...

My perfume, Manifesto, was based on the scent of basil. more...

The reason of my life is not to be the most beautiful woman in the world. more...

True elegance for me is the manifestation of an independent mind. more...

There is this idea that you have to play heroines or women who succeed. more...

A lot of the advertisement is done by saying: first of all, have a complex about who you are. more...

Although Dorothy in Blue Velvet was humiliated and hurt by men, basically I could react to how she felt. more...

I am now at an age when they wanted me to play her mother. more...

I never really think about what I have to do to stick to my image. I just follow what I like to do. Sometimes it's glamorous, sometimes it's not. more...

I'm always a little worried when people have met me in person because I'm worried they'll be disappointed. more...

It's a new business for me to be a filmmaker. more...

To be an icon is a big job - it's beyond acting. And sometimes it pays, and sometimes it doesn't. more...

Animals are everywhere. Some are more romantic, like tigers and elephants and chimpanzees, and some are less romantic, like earthworms, but they are just as interesting. more...

As I grew older, I worked less as an actor and as a model, and I went back to what I had tried to do when I was young but wasn't really available. I'm so glad now to be in my sixties and to be able to go back to school. more...

I graduated from Academy of Fashion and Costume Design in Rome. At first, I thought I was going to be a costume designer for films, and then I ended up working in fashion - not as a designer, but mostly as a model. more...

I live in New York, and the only live animals you see are cockroaches, rats and pigeons, which I admire immensely. When I see an animal that thrives in the garbage, I feel relief; in our urban environment, other animals are dying out. more...

I was always interested in animals, but when I was little, animal behavior was still a new science. It was available to become a veterinarian, it was available to study biology, but not specifically animal behavior. In the '60s, Jane Goodall was the founder of this new science. more...

It's nice to go and be a guest on a television sitcom. It pays well; it's easy because generally it's a supporting role, so you go, you do two or three things, you're in touch with people there. They're widely popular, so they're seen by many people. more...

When I grew up in Italy in the 1950s, it was still very agricultural. Food was very important; produce was very important. Everyone made their own olive oil. It took me a long time after I moved here to understand that Americans are much further away from their food. more...

The red carpet has become like a parallel business. The next day, there are TV programmes, and magazines, and it's all, 'Do you like the dress or not like the dress?' and 'Did she look fat?' To keep borrowing dresses and jewellery is like a full-time job. And you have to be a fantasy, which you can never be, so you always feel depressed. more...

When I was young, it was difficult to imagine entering a world where my parents succeeded so much and I could have risked failing. It would have felt much harder. more...

Maybe there's some kind of modeling that can be tedious, like catalogue modeling, but there's a kind of modeling, with runways or working with Richard Avedon, that's not very far from acting. Besides the fact that you don't have a partner to react to, the body language is the same. more...

I am much more radical in my beliefs than my products represent me to be. more...

When David left me I became totally brokenhearted. more...

These same people seem to forget that mother also took a lot of chances with the type of roles she played. more...

I like to extend myself as an actress and David really helped me. more...

You don't do an experimental film to become rich, so the people who are involved are involved because they enjoy the creative aspect of it. more...

Ever since I was a little girl, I have always loved animals and been fascinated with them. more...

I always loved experimenting in film. more...

I am the daughter of Mr. Neo-realism: I should gravitate towards narrative simply told, character, the truth. And I do love those movies. more...

I have the most fun writing and directing. And I always choose myself as the lead actor. more...

I live in the country. I'm a bird-watcher, an oyster-raiser. You know, I'll do anything that - raise dogs for the blind as a volunteer. more...

I loved my career as a model, and that evolved into being an actress. more...

I seldom look at myself to avoid any self-criticism. more...

I was born with a love of animals, the same way I was born with brown hair. When I was a little girl in Rome, I always had pets, which I adored. more...

I would like to be forgotten. What's so good about being remembered? more...

I've had a lot of 'aha' moments, but the big 'aha' about growing older is the mental freedom. more...

If you look at most beauty advertisements, you would think that makeup is only for beautiful women in their early twenties. more...

It always amazed me that people believed I was this beautiful object. more...

It took me a long time to be accepted as an actress, I think, because of the modeling and because of my mother. more...

Mammals are very close to us, but bugs are strange. They're more mysterious and exotic. more...

Many years in New York has made me urban, and I won't eat my chicken because I met him personally! more...

My films are comical films. They are made to laugh at. They are comical - and scientifically correct. more...

The first time I went to Hollywood, I was 25 years old. My background was mostly Italian. more...

There are so many spiders, and their rituals, their mating rituals, their courtship ritual, can be very, very different. more...

There is often a great disparity between a director's personal style and the movies he makes. more...

I always encourage women to let their individuality show by not covering up what they perceive as flaws. When I see a woman with the natural wrinkles of time on her face, I do not see the wrinkles at all, but when I see a woman trying to cover them up with too much foundation or concealer, all I see are her wrinkles. more...

In America, they are paranoid about ruining the reputations of people once they are dead and cannot answer back. They have this fascination which to me seems cruel and morbid. I do not want any part of it. more...

Animation translates well to a small screen. When you look at Walt Disney or Chuck Jones - you know, Bugs Bunny - there really isn't any difference if you watch on a very big screen or a computer screen. more...

By the time I was successful with covers of 'Vogue' and 'Harper's Bazaar' and 'Vanity Fair' and the Lancome contract, someone asked how old I was. They almost fainted when I said 33. more...

Every time you work, it's a new film, and generally when you work with auteurs, people that write and direct their films, there's always an originality. more...

I always dreamed when I was a little girl interested in animals that I would go live in Africa. Then I found out that you can look in your backyard, and you can do your own safari. more...

I always have parmigiano-reggiano, olive oil and pasta at home. When people get sick, they want chicken soup; I want spaghetti with parmesan cheese, olive oil and a bit of lemon zest. It makes me feel better every time. more...

I always say that in my career as an actress, I've always worked with people like David Lynch or Guy Maddin or Peter Weir who are considered not mainstream directors and that could be because they are like my dad. They are pioneers, and pioneers, by definition, invent something new. more...

I became an actress way into my 30s because I thought that I had to find my own way, and that's why I worked so much in modelling, until I realised that the differences between acting and modelling weren't that great. I always say that modelling is a little bit like being a silent actress. more...

I didn't think I was going to be an actress. Everybody in my family was in films, and they succeeded so much, I thought, 'It's better for me to do something else,' and they agreed. more...

I don't look at 'Vogue' to ask what I'm going to wear. Because it's something on a body too young. I have to look at the social pages to see women my age. To see how Amanda Burden is dressed and say, 'Hmmm. Maybe I should try that.' more...

I don't wear much makeup, except during work. I felt lucky to be chosen to be a model. I used to joke, 'The next best thing to winning the lottery is having a beauty contract.' more...

I grew up in a family of filmmakers, so I always wanted to make films about animals, especially comical films. Something about animals amuses me. And they have a great mystery. It's the same mystique some people might feel looking at the stars or the ocean. more...

I grew up in Italy, and our country is a country of great agriculture and food produce. It wasn't like I was urban and only knew about high-heeled shoes and purses and never knew where my eggs came from. more...

I live in New York, but I am always delighted to come to Europe because I am European and grew up here until I was 20. I am not only Italian, I am partly Swedish. When my parents divorced, I was three years old and went to live in Paris... when I am offered a film in Europe, I come with great enthusiasm! more...

I live my everyday life as a person, and I react to my photos from a certain distance. When I look at a photo, I detach myself and look at it as a product - not as me, Isabella. more...

I loved modeling. I absolutely loved it. I was so happy to get the cover of 'Vogue' - 23 times. I keep each copy. I made more money as a model than as an actress or as a filmmaker. In monetary terms, beauty pays more than anything. more...

I started modeling at 28. I'm 5-feet-7 1/2 , and I never went on a diet. I followed what my doctor told me: 'It's good to have a little bit of fat. Your weight is fine. Don't go any lighter.' more...

I think I was always interested in animals. If a man likes a woman, you know, he might discuss business, but there's a part of his brain that is looking at the girl coming in and checking the girls. I do the same with animals. more...

I wanted to make a film about my dad, a sort of love letter, and explain what I understood of his cinema, which was so utopian. I also wanted to give the sense of his cinema, because they have never been very big box-office, but they were very influential. more...

I would love to be a field biologist. I would love to do what Jane Goodall did, just totally immerse myself in the life of one specific species for years and study every aspect of its behavior until little by little, all of these patterns become clear. That would be great, but I don't know if I have it left in me. more...

I'd like this to become my principal activity: to make films about animals. Of course it's always interesting to model, but it depends who you are working with. I will continue to make acting, too, but I'm old - I'm getting tired of it. more...

I'd love to meet Darwin. He caused such controversy over whether God created the earth in six days or whether we evolved over time. I'd love to discuss that with him - what a fantastic conversation! more...

I've always been an entertainer all my life; I come from a family of entertainers. I always made, very pretentiously, a comparison with Agatha Christie. Her inspiration was crime, and I'm sure she must have taken courses or read about crime, because it was the basis of her stories. But ultimately, it was her own fantasy. more...

I've always been interested in animal behavior, and I keep reading about it because it's so surprising all the time - so many things are happening around us that we neglect to look at. Part of the passion I have for biology is based on this wonderment. more...

If a hamster has too many babies she knows she cannot carry, she not only abandons them, but she eats them. That means she doesn't have to go out and hunt for food for herself. more...

If you see a person who's insecure and covers it up, it can be quite a problem. But the person who is insecure and shows you is quite appealing. They give you just the courage to drop your defenses. more...

In interviews, the first question I get in America is always: 'What do you do to stay young?' I do nothing. I don't think aging is a problem. What irritates me a little is growing fatter. It irritates me that if I eat what I want to eat, it shows. more...

Market research shows that older women like seeing older women in ads, and that younger women do, too - because they see them and are not frightened of growing older. more...

Most people divorce because one in the couple falls in love with someone else: it's a common cause of divorce. I still think that it's tinted - this is my opinion - with a veil of racism and American puritanism. more...

My father's films are often very slow for the modern audiences, which are used to a lot of editing. It's the audience that watches the film instead of the director dictating the reaction he wants from you. more...

Once I realised that my job as a model was to emote in front of the camera, I thought, 'Well now, I just have to add words, and I can do films.' But also, my success as a model made me more confident about becoming an actress because, just in case I failed, I thought, 'Well, you know, if I failed as an actress, I can do another job.' more...

One of the great issues in biology is the origin of altruism - of why you would do something for someone else that could hurt you - and Darwin posited that it might be rooted in maternal instinct, in sacrificing yourself for your children. more...

People use mobile phones in this very distracting environment where you probably don't have time to watch a 30-minute film, but you might have time to look at a film for a minute and learn something you didn't expect while you walk on the streets. more...

That is the great pleasure of working with great directors. You get to look at the world through many different prisms. I guess I love talent, whatever form it takes. more...

The problem with middle age, at least when it comes to modeling, is you seldom see a model who is past 27, 28. If they use anyone older, then it becomes automatically a 'personality' story. more...

The red carpet has become like a parallel business.The next day, there are TV programmes, and magazines, and it's all, 'Do you like the dress or not like the dress?' and 'Did she look fat?' To keep borrowing dresses and jewellery is like a full-time job. And you have to be a fantasy, which you can never be, so you always feel depressed. more...

The secret of using makeup for fashion is to have fun with it. When people see that you are playful, that's attractive. Sometimes people apply makeup because they have bags under their eyes or because they don't feel good, and that just reads 'insecure.' more...

There are consequences with age, so you have to evolve. I've loved becoming a filmmaker. But I would love to continue modeling, and there isn't really any job for me. It's being marginalized - that's the sad part. more...

When I grew up, we always had our chickens, and we ate our eggs, and we ate our chickens. The family always had a pig, and we would kill it at Christmas and eat it for three or four months afterwards. more...

When I was a teenager, I thought maybe I'll be a filmmaker, making film documentaries. My dream when I was a girl was I would be hired by 'National Geographic' or work with David Attenborough, but it didn't happen. I became a model. more...

True elegance is for me the manifestation of an independent mind. more...

Adoption has the dimension of connection - not only to your own tribe, but beyond, widening the scope of what constitutes love, ties and family. It is a larger embrace. By adopting, we stretch past our immediate circles and, by reaching out, find an unexpected sense of belonging with others. more...

From the time I was a child I wanted to be like my mother. Not necessarily an actress - I never dreamed I'd have the courage. But an active, volatile woman like she was. more...

When I took my clothes off in Blue Velvet, I wanted to convey the brutality of sex abuse. I wanted to look like a quartered cow hanging in a butcher shop as well as disturbingly appealing. more...

David Lynch came out of it a genius, and I came out of it a fat girl. I'm sorry that the only comment I get about the part is the way I look. Commenting on the critics' response to her performance in Blue Velvet more...

In interviews, the first question I get in America is always: 'What do you do to stay young?' I do nothing. I don't think aging is a problem ... I'm so surprised that the emphasis on aging here is on physical decay, when aging brings such incredible freedom. Now what I want most is laughs. I don't want to hurt anybody by laughing - there is no meanness to it. I just want to laugh. more...

I believe in a set of values I cannot live by. ... more...

I believe in a set of values I cannot live by. I set high goals for myself, I seek perfection, dream of exotic faraway places. But ultimately, what I long for isn't far away at all. It's in my own backyard. Imperfection charms me, familiar things move me... a celebration of what we have, instead of what we long for. That for me, is glamor. more...

In America, they are paranoid about ruining the reputations of people once they are dead and cannot answer back. They have this fascination which to me seems cruel and morbid. I do not want any part of it more...

I was always fascinated by the infinite, strange and 'scandalous' ways that insects copulate. more...

What I think has been wonderful about my life is that it has been diverse, and that I've been able to do so many different things. I was able to evolve from modeling into acting. And then when acting opportunities became limited because of my age, I was able to become a writer and director and author. So, I am grateful to myself that I didn't just sit around and become nostalgic about the past that has been and can't come back, but that I instead decided to move on. more...

It's hard to make a living in any of the arts. When most people think of artists, they think of the stars and the celebrities. But that's such a tiny minority of the elites who are able to make those millions of dollars. The reality is that it's very hard for the rest to make a living as an artist. So, you really have to persevere and understand that achieving the sort of success where you're making the big money is like winning the lottery. more...

To me, it is very important to have perfume in which it is hard to recognize a particular flower or scent. That gives a touch of mystery. more...


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