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Can Anne Hathaway Speak French?

Did you know that French, alongside English, is the only other language that is taught in every country in the world? Somewhere between 6-11 million Americans speak French fluently as their second language.

While it’s common for people to learn an additional language than their native, it’s only natural for actors who regularly travel the world to pick up on popular languages.

About Anne

Following her first big break in 2001 starring as a Genovian Princess in The Princess Diaries, Anne Hathaway has acted in more than 40 movies that have been based all over the world, including France. The actress is even of French descent on her mother’s side!

Considering the star’s personal facts, fans have taken to questioning whether or not Hathaway has even closer ties to the country. Additionally, although she has since become one of Hollywood’s elite, if Anne Hathaway didn’t become a successful actress, her back-up plan was to be an English teacher. Her secondary dream might easily prove to be evidence of the star’s love for language.

So, while French is a particularly popular language and is relatively common for Americans to maintain as a second language, would it be fair to ask whether or not the beloved actress – who likely has a love for language – can speak and understand French? Let’s take a look.

Can Anne Hathaway Speak French?

There are several French connections tied to the booming actress. Hathaway has been in movies based in France, has traveled to France for fashion week in The Devil Wears Prada, and has even sung in French in a viral YouTube video.

Through all of her associations with the country, one may wonder if the actress actually learned French along her way to fame. 

Anne Hathaway’s French Connections

Les Misérables – a French story based in 19th century France – was remade in a famed 2012 musical film, featuring Hathaway and an entire host of celebrated actors. Hathaway starred as Fantine, a French woman. She sang each of her takes live, performing beautifully during the film, and even received an Oscar for the best-supporting actress.

Working alongside icon Meryl Streep, Hathaway also starred in The Devil Wears Prada. The movie showcases Hathaway as an up-and-coming journalist, eager to learn the fashion industry. The film ends with a final and genuine trip to Paris, France, for fashion week. 

Additionally, in a viral Youtube video from October 2011, Hathaway and fellow actor Joseph Gordon Levitt sang an entire song in French at the Orpheum Theater in Los Angeles.

Is Anne Hathaway Fluent in French?

Hathaway can evidently sing and speak in French. However, is she just going through the motions of a Hollywood actress and just learning the lines, or does she actually understand the language as well? According to Dailymail.com, Hathaway herself stated, 

But the thing is, I can say “merci” and “de rien” with a very convincing accent, and then everybody starts motoring off, and I’m like, “Je ne comprends pas.” I studied French for five years, but none of it stuck.

So, while it may be easy for Hathaway to sing and speak French in short segments, she stated that she hasn’t actually learned the language. 


Although the viral YouTube video proves that Anne Hathaway can sing in French, the actress has admitted that she is not fluent in the language. She hasn’t necessarily acquired the language; nevertheless, as if the Hollywood actress needs any more glam, she has shown in her acting and singing career that she can indeed memorize French and even speak bits when needed.

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  • Lauren is an Indiana University graduate with a double major in Communications and Culture as well as Psychology. She enjoys spending time with family, travel, and being outdoors.

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