Who’s the Best Marie-Antoinette on Screen?


Joyeux Quatorze Juillet! Today is Bastille Day, or La Fête Nationale, and what better day to talk about our beloved Marie-Antoinette? OK, OK, there are plenty of better days, considering that the Storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789, began the revolution that ended Marie’s reign and life. But we’re nothing if not cheeky bastards around here, so today we’re going to revel in the irony and enjoy a little poll…



Let’s eat cake and discuss who’s the best Marie-Antoinette in movies and TV!








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Three historical costumers who decided the world needed a podcast and blog dedicated to historical costume movies and everything right and wrong with them.

6 Responses

  1. Maria D.

    I have to be honest and admit that I’ve only seen the movie with Kirsten Dunst – I think she did an okay job portraying a young Marie and what her lifestyle would have been like.

    • Cheryl

      This is a tough one, as I know a lit of the actresses are way too pretty to play Marie Antoinette, but on the other hand, Kirsten Dunst did look stunning in that movie, and I agree with Maria that I likely how self-absorbed and clueless she came across in the first part of the movie. But I’m a huge hypocrit and hate when too-pretty actresses play Victoria…

  2. lesartsdecoratifs

    I think that focus on other characters than MA always ends making her look vapid and tone deaf. I mean, ultimately Kirsten Dunst also portrays her as a vapid and tone deaf but by doing it solely from her point of view makes it understandable and even charming.

    So if you want to watch a movie about Marie Antoinette that makes her human, this is the movie. But if you want to watch a movie about why the French Revolution happened – the thing that made MA so memorable to begin with (we ain’t having this poll for Marie Leszczynska) – all the other movies/tv shows on this poll are better. Yes, even the Lady Oscar movie.

  3. LadySlippers

    Hmmmmm I never realised what a profound question this is/was.

    Honestly? I think too many people, writers/directors/actresses create a caricature of MA without truly understanding how she was ill prepared by her mother, education, and the French court, to adequately deal with how her life unfolded in France.

    It never helps that MA and the French Revolution are a very complex story that people whittle down for simplicity’s sake. So to answer your question, I’m not sure if any one actress or movie has captured the complexity of both MA and the events around her. In all fairness, MA needs a mini-series to explain the breadth and depth of her life in order to do her any justice.

  4. Vivi

    Well my favorite Marie Antoinette was Karine Vanasse in “Marie Antoinette La veritable histoire”. She was absolutely perfect in the role.

  5. Will

    It’s cosmically unfair that we did get a chance to see more of Joely Richardson as Antoinette. She has the look, and more importantly THE MANNERS of Marie-Antoinette down to a science. Too bad the movie made the mistake of switching the roles of villain and victim respectively with Jeanne de La Motte-Valois and Marie-Antoinette… I seriously own the movie for Richardson’s 5 seconds of Antoinette swooping up her epic, snow-covered veil.