'Real beauty is to be true to oneself. That's what makes me feel good.'
- Laetitia Casta
At 5'8" with her long dark blonde hair framing her alluring face and
bright blue eyes, Laetitia Casta is voluptuous, youthful and sensual. She
is the essence of the GUESS image in it's advertising. Born in Normandy on
the 11th of May 1978, she is the middle child of father Dominique and mother
Line. Laetitia (which means 'joy' in Latin) enjoyed drawing and writing
stories at an early age, but it wasn't until she turned 15 that her true
talent was discovered. While on a beach near Corsica she was approached
by a photographer and agent of a prestigious Paris modeling
agency, Madison Models.
Once her father finally agreed to the agency taking some test photographs,
her unmistakable potential was recognized by the founder of Madison Models
- despite the fact that the shoot occurred without the aid of makeup and a
designer wardroom which many models rely on to promote themselves. However,
her career did not begin to take off until the director of the French
edition of Elle saw and was impressed with Laetitia's looks.
Modeling contracts and appearances in magazines quickly ensued. Paul
Marciano - founder and art director of Guess? who is incidentally accredited
for the success of Claudia Schiffer - was taken by Casta's near perfection.
Her work in the Guess ad (she became their new front Girl) was her debut
advertising campaign. Shot by Neil Kirk in Jamaica in October 1994, it
allowed Americans to become acquainted with Casta. Thanks to
Marciano, Guess has brought her international exposure and recognition.
In 1996 she was contracted with Victoria's Secret, gracing many covers
of the catalogue as one of the Angels - the name attributed to the other four
models of the company. Then, in 1997 Casta joined fellow models by appearing
in the popular Sports Illustrated swimwear edition for a consecutive three
years. A year later she was honoured by Rolling Stone. They named her
Hottest Model of the Year, and placed a nude Casta on the cover of their
'Hot' issue. Although this was not the first time the magazine had featured
a nude celebrity on the cover, it was considered the most controversial
issue - which provided a lot of publicity for the rising model.
In addition to Rolling Stone, Casta has adorned the pages of many other
magazines, including the Italian edition of Glamour; Vogue; and
Cosmopolitan. In 1998, she joined Kate Moss and Jennifer Aniston in becoming
a spokesperson for cosmetics company L'Oreal. Casta's relationship with
designer Yves St. Laurent has helped to promote her career. Since 1998
Casta's public outfits have all been personal Yves St. Laurent creations.
Her appearance in the exclusive Pirelli calendar - considered a
collector's item because it consists of beautiful shots taken by the most
prestigious photographers - is considered one of Casta's accomplishments.
In the 1999 issue, themed "Women Through the Decades", Casta is featured as
representative of the 1950's woman.
Happy and healthy, she currently lives in Paris with her mother, father,
older brother and younger sister. When her hectic schedule allows, Laetitia
enjoys car racing with her friends, traveling, cooking with her mum and
spending time with her younger sister. Laetitia also has a brown belt in
Judo, she feels that it helps her in her modeling career to have control.
To set limits for herself, to adopt a non-aggressive stance and to think
with her mind not her emotions.
Laetitia looks forward to a bright future. For now, she is content "to
continue modeling for as long as [she] can", but marriage and a family
is definitely a future prospect for her. Casta has also applied her talents
to the big screen in her feature film debut - 1999's Asterix and Obelix which
co-stars Gerard Depardieu and Oscar winner Roberto Benigni. Casta will also
star in La Bicyclette Bleu (The Blue Bicycle), a three-part made-for-French
TV movie set in World War II France. Despite her illustrious
modeling career she said that acting is something she is very interested in pursuing.
Her motto remains "If there's someone knocking at my door, I will open it."
Starr for Nabou.com, ©