Fotinì Peluso is the typical example of a person you cite when discussions break out between boomers on topics such as “the young people of today who are lazy, who are fanatical, who are ignorant compared to us at their age“. Because she is none of this, to an impressive extent: born in Rome in 1999, she has a degree in Economics, moved to Paris, has had a series of important roles, including that of Irene, complicated sister in Francesca Archibugi’s The Hummingbird (based on the book by Sandro Veronesi) and that of Nina in the Netflix TV series Everything Calls for Salvation by Francesco Bruni, based on the novel by Daniele Mencarelli, a story of life and encounters inside a psychiatric ward.

As well as films with sacred maestros such as Cédric Klapisch (Greek Salad, 2022) and Delphine Lehericey (Les Indociles, 2022), she speaks four languages fluently and correctly and she jokes: «Well, if you like, you could add ten years of piano, and then artistic gymnastics, skating, skiing and horseback riding».

Fotinì Peluso. Total look Chanel
Total look CHANEL: black cashmere and silk jumpsuit embellished with jeweled buttons, white alpaca perforated sweater, gold-effect metal and rhinestone ring

Fotinì Peluso: a “luminous” talent

She is so overworked that she calls us, all parties still rather sleepy, one Sunday morning while she is in Anzio filming the second season of Everything Calls for Salvation. Yet she slyly plays shy and tells us she «suffers from impostor syndrome, because I never feel up to the parts that they call me to play, then I don’t think about it and everything goes as it should, very naturally, organically». Meaning, it’s all okay, Fotinì. «Yeah, sure». More than sure. She won the Biraghi Award as a revelation actress at the 2023 Nastri D’Argento for Everything Calls for Salvation: «Yeah, they fell for it». And we laugh. Of course, no one believes it.  

I ask her for the thousandth time if it has been, unlike the roles for which she has been chosen, a real burden to have a name that lends itself in Italian to all sorts of name-calling and sad puns: «Not really. My dad is Roman, my mum is from Thebes and her name is Paraskevi, which means “Friday”: our family has a certain sense of humour. At least my name means “luminous” and it’s that of a saint, so I have always been fine with it».

Both her mother and her famous name come from Greece, of which she has fond memories of the very long summers on the islands Chios and Skyros. «There was no electricity, no hot water, no roads. We washed in basins, Dad fishing, always and only grilled octopus, every night. Since there was nothing to do, my sister and I would make everything up: stories, adventures. I think they were the happiest moments we’ve all had together».

Total look CHANEL
Total look CHANEL: perforated dress in white alpaca, jeweled belt made of metal, glass beads, resin and rhinestones Black and white, printed leather heeled boots, black and white plexiglass minaudière; Les Beiges Touche de Teint in B30 CHANEL MAKE UP

Fotinì Peluso opens her acting career with a hard “no”.

Fotinì’s adolescent path is that of an intelligent radical chic Roman girl – it’s clear from the tone with which she responds that it’s not the moment to discuss the topic of ‘beauty’: she is and knows she is, but no, now is not the time. Classic secondary school at Virgilio, good grades, beers in Trastevere, the Cinema America social club. And then the encounter with acting, which all started with a “no“: that from Ivan Cotroneo when looking for the protagonist of One Kiss, for which he chose Valentina Romani, «but only because he wanted an older girl» (bye bye impostor syndrome!). Cotroneo would then seek her out for the TV show La compagnia del cigno (2018 and 2020).

« As a person, I’m not defined by my work, my interests or my professional position. I am much more than the sum of every single recognisable part of me»

So here it is: having achieved such widespread hype and visibility at the age of 24 doesn’t inflate you a bit, when you’re so young? What if all this recognition randomly disappeared tomorrow, even if that’s not even remotely possible? «Well, look: I don’t know. It’s that as a person, I’m not defined by my job, my interests, or my professional position.

It bothers me when I see colleagues, even older than me, who depend too much on this life in the eyes of others, and I wonder how much they’ve actually had to give up themselves, their roots, their essence. I don’t think that would happen to me, because I’m so much more than the sum of every single recognisable part of me. For me the important thing is to be happy, and if you want to, you almost always find a way to be happy. I strive to be an extremely positive person, and I think I can always appreciate the things that make me happy every day. Acting is part of me, but not success: if I no longer acted on TV or in the cinema, well: I’d do it in front of the mirror. It wouldn’t be a problem, really».

How about love? «Of course, that too. But I admit that I don’t go overboard when I’m in a relationship either, also because my boyfriend, who’s French, lives in Rome. In short, we traded nationalities, and so we see each other as often as we can». 

In terms of brightness, Fotinì Peluso seems to be surrounded more by that of Voltaire and Diderot’s Enlightenment than by that of her own travelling neon sign. Isn’t that a touch too rational? «Being stubborn and convinced of what you do is not equivalent to cultivating cynicism or sentimental aridity: on the contrary, it’s quite the opposite. You protect them, you put them in a greenhouse to avoid exposing them to the bad weather of a world that lives above all in the two-dimensional image of social media».

Total look CHANEL
Total look CHANEL: black and pink patterned wool tweed short jacket and bermuda shorts embellished with jeweled buttons, metal and rhinestone jeweled bel, pink and black tweed and metal bag, shiny black fabric and grosgrain slingbacks embellished with white camellias ; Coco Crush necklace in 18 k BEIGE GOLD and diamonds CHANEL FINE JEWELRY Ombre Première Libre in Sycomore CHANEL MAKE UP

«I think my generation is struggling to have a little more visibility, but I also think there’s still a long way to go»

Is there enough room for a new generation of young actors? «I really think so… Or at least there’s much more than there was for the generation before mine. The problem in Italian cinema is that unfortunately there’s a rather small niche of professionals from which the main characters of a new project are chosen, but now there’s also a whole new wave of very young directors with whom we are teaming up. And that’s the point: the concept of group, of team, accompanies all young people working in cinema, without too much competitiveness».

So it’s even more pointless to ask you if, with such an idyllic situation, there are enough roles, plots, scripts for women… «No». A rather concise answer. What did you say? «No. But this happens everywhere, not only in Italy. The presence of women in cinema is extremely limited in terms of those who work there, from directors to actresses, from operators to screenwriters. But have you ever noticed that, in every event in which an award is given, the women receiving them have always been a minority? And it’s not true that roles and scripts are only lacking for older female artists. They’re lacking for women in general. There’s a breadth of the male role in every field of the film industry that is overflowing, excessive, incomparable».

Shall we end our interview with something a bit more positive, Fotinì? «I think my generation is struggling to have a little more visibility, but I also think there’s still a long way to go, in every field of creative or artistic expression».

«Every rejection leaves me disappointed. Fortunately, it doesn’t last long. I go out, I take a walk, I look up and I tell myself that I can’t be influenced by a part I haven’t been given. There will be more»

Last question: once there was a big difference between “busy” actors and those of “TV” or “popular” actors. Do you, who have worked with very intellectual directors and widespread series, still suffer from this subdivision? «Honestly, no. I believe that the release of author-created series even on extremely “democratic” platforms like Netflix or Amazon have helped to break down certain pseudo-intellectual walls and to give precedence to the skill of individuals».
Be honest: when Cotroneo said “no” to you at the beginning of your career, were you upset? How do you handle professional rejection? «Um… Not well. But since I’m always a victim of the famous impostor syndrome, let’s say that I have a harder time not so much accepting a “no”, but in explaining why they said “yes”. But it’s useless: every rejection leaves me disappointed. Fortunately it doesn’t last long. I go out, I take a walk, I look up and I tell myself that I can’t be influenced by a part I haven’t been given. There will be more. Here’s the happy ending you were looking for. Satisfied?». And she laughs. 


Fotinì Peluso
Total look CHANEL: black and white cashmere sweater embellished with feathers; Rouge Coco Bloom in Ease CHANEL MAKE UP
Fotinì Peluso. Total look CHANEL
Total look CHANEL: black and pink patterned wool tweed short jacket embellished with jeweled buttons
Coco Crush necklace in 18 k BEIGE GOLD and diamonds CHANEL FINE JEWELRY; Les Beiges Crème Belle Mine Ensoleillée in 392 Soleil Tan Medium Bronzer CHANEL MAKE UP
Fotinì Peluso
Total look CHANEL: coat and cardigan in burgundy tweed, gray and black embellished with camellia and jeweled buttons, gold and ruthenium-effect metal necklace Black patent leather heeled boots; Les Beiges Poudre Belle Mine Naturelle in B30 CHANEL MAKE UP


Editor in Chief Federico Poletti

Photographer Luisa Carcavale

Stylist Andreas Mercante

Make-up Martina D’Andrea using Chanel Beauty 

Hair Lorenzo – Contestarockhair

Location Nero Studio


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