Rare Glimpses of Brigitte Bardot Make It Hard To Look Away

By Sophia Maddox | January 22, 2024

Her First Love Was Ballet

Brigitte Ann-Marie Bardot has been so many things in her lifetime. A sex symbol, a fashion icon, and eventually an animal rights activist. The French actress, singer, and model often referred to by her initials, B.B., shocked the world when she walked away from her career at just 39-years old.

This early retirement may have been prompted by her exhaustion and a desire to focus on animal rights, but it also immortalized her former image. Her onscreen presence is now encased in amber, a separate lifetime from the one in which she exists now.

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Bardot wanted to be a ballerina early in her life and attended ballet school for three years beginning in 1947. At the invitation her mother's friend, she modeled in a fashion show in 1949 and in the same year she modeled for the fashion magazine Jardin des Modes. Aged 15, she was noticed by a young film director while babysitting. He showed photos of her from an issue of Elle magazine, which she had appeared on the cover, to a director and screenwriter who offered Bardot the opportunity to audition for a role in his upcoming film. Although Bardot got the role, the film was cancelled but made her consider becoming an actress. She started her acting career in 1952. After appearing in 16 routine comedy films that had limited international release, she became world-famous in 1957 after starring in the controversial film And God Created Woman.

Bardot is still an animal rights activist 

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Still the animal rights activist, today Bardot’s life is full of work for her foundation. This entails extensive communication with civil servants, government ministers, foreign heads of state and really anyone who can help further her cause. She also has her loving husband and what basically amounts to a farm to tend to. Bardot’s pets include (but are not limited to) dogs, goats, sheep, pigs, geese, ducks, nearly 50 horses, and around 20 cats.