Frank Leboeuf: Ask a Silly Question

Former Chelsea defender and French World Cup winner Frank Leboeuf answers FourFourTwo's ridiculous posers in November 2011.

We are part of The Trust Project What is it?

Hi Frank. You’re an actor these days. Do you find that, being bald, you get typecast as villains, terrorists and rotters?
Hi. It does seem that I die a lot in the parts that I get! In the movie that I’m in at the moment [Ocean Hotel], I’m a pretty dark character. Hopefully one day I’ll get in a film where I don’t get killed and make it to the end. But I think I could play a romantic guy. The parts that George Clooney and Brad Pitt get, though? Maybe not...

Larry David claims that bald people are a genuine minority group who get discriminated against. Do you agree?
Ha! I’ve never felt that, I must admit. I’ve been fortunate in my life, so I won’t start complaining that I’m in some bald minority group. Being bald is kind of fashionable now. And you don’t have to bother with hair care. You save time, and money on shampoo.

So who, then, is history’s best bald-headed man?
How about Barack Obama? He’s got a bald head, and as far as I can see, he’s pretty successful and popular.

...OK, Frank, we’ll just pretend he’s bald for your sake. Of your former Chelsea team-mates, who do you think would be best at playing a gangster in the movies?
It would have to be Mr Dennis Wise, right? He was a very nice person off the field, you know, but as soon as he got into his car he became a complete nutcase. When he was like that, you could see him in a Guy Ritchie film like Vinnie Jones.

What about a smoothly romantic leading man?
Graeme Le Saux. He’s smart, he has a baby face and he’s really nice – a proper gentleman.

And a Rambo-style action hero?
The Rock, right? Marcel Desailly. He’s got that aura of “I’m solid, I know that I’m solid, but I don’t need to be high-tempered because I know everyone else is scared of me.” He’s calm; he’s the Godfather.

Your name means ‘Frank the Beef’ over here. But are you a fan of the popular meat?
I am pretty tender! [chuckles] And yes, I like beef. It has to be served rare, grilled, with a little bit of salt and no sauce, so you can get the full taste.

The French call the English ‘Les Rosbifs’. Why on earth is that?
It means that I am cousins with the English! But the reason we call you that is because you go really red in the sun.

True, we’re a pasty bunch. Now: can British cheeses compete with their great French cousins?
I don’t know. I don’t eat cheese.

A non-cheese-eating Frenchman? Can’t you get arrested for that?
Cheese, dairy, milk – it’s all bad for you, because of the lactose. Cheese is good when you’re growing up, but adults don’t need it.

We're genuinely stunned.
Cheese is for children. It’s a poison.

We’d better move on. Do you have any strange dreams?
Yes. I’m claustrophobic, and sometimes I have nightmares in which I get kidnapped and put in a coffin. I start to suffocate. It’s horrible.

Nasty. You’d better give that cameo in True Blood a swerve.
Exactly. It even affected me as a footballer – if I scored a goal, I’d never slide on the floor, because if people jumped on top of me I would freak out.

At English schools there’s a game called ‘pile-on’, which generally involves everybody jumping on the smallest child.
I never experienced that, and I’m so pleased! I’m really bad. I can’t even have a proper MRI scan – I have to have an open scan because I’m afraid to go into the tunnel.

Finally, do you ever dance naked around the house wearing your World Cup medal, bellowing “Leboeuf!” FFT definitely would.
Er, no... I’m not that f***ed up! You know, I don’t pay much attention to it at all. For a year my medal was in the glovebox of my car. My son opened it up and said: "What’s this, dad?" I’d forgotten all about it.

Crazy! Merci for the parler, Frank!
No problem.

Interview: Nick Moore. From the November 2011 issue of FourFourTwo.