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Eric Cantona says falling in love changed his life

March 31, 2012 - London

Eric Cantona says that his life transformed after he met his present wife, actress Rachida Brakni, 10 years his junior, on the set of the film 'L'Outremangeur' (The Overeater) in 2002.

The former footballer's latest flick, a thriller called 'Switch', released on Friday. It is his 22nd in what has become an established movie career.

"It was love at first sight... It does happen - and it happened to me. I wanted nothing more in my life than to be with her. That was, suddenly, my goal," the Daily Express quoted Cantona as saying.

"Falling in love changed my life. I played a monster in the film and she was a beautiful girl, helping me to accept myself. She played a character who helped me find my beauty inside.

"I had to accept that after all I could be a nice guy. It was an interesting story which made a good film," he added.

Cantona, 45, later moved in with Brakni and divorced his teacher wife Isabelle, 47, with whom he has son Raphael, 23, and 16-year-old daughter Josephine. He married the actress five years ago.

"This was all the luck in the world and all my hopes rolled in to one.

"It was... magnificent. She realised that I am not always this confident man who appears to be fearless," he said.

The couple now live in Paris, absorbing themselves in acting, poetry and art. Brakni has even directed Cantona in a play.

"I have insecurities, fears, doubts - and know I have to work at them. Depression? Yes, a bit of that, too, in the early days after giving up football to start a new life," he said.


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