When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Already a subscriber? Log in .

You've reached your limit of one free article.

Get unlimited access to Worldcrunch

You can cancel anytime .


Exclusive International news coverage

Ad-free experience NEW

Weekly digital Magazine NEW

9 daily & weekly Newsletters

Access to Worldcrunch archives

Free trial

30-days free access, then $2.90
per month.

Annual Access BEST VALUE

$19.90 per year, save $14.90 compared to monthly billing.save $14.90.

Subscribe to Worldcrunch

French First Lady Julie Gayet Breaks Silence, Poses For Magazines

PARIS — Breaking more than two years of public silence, actress Julie Gayet, the long presumed companion of French President Francois Hollande, appears on two major French magazine covers this week.

Gayet has guarded her privacy after her affair with the French President was revealed in January 2014 in a gossip magazine while Hollande was still living with another woman. Gayet and Hollande have still never appeared together in public.

"Julie Gayet will play her part. Free and committed to the president," reads Thursday's cover of French weekly Paris Match. The magazine, which features a major photo spread of the 44-year-old actress-producer, quotes her confidantes confirming that she wants to take on an "official" role alongside Hollande.

Gayet also gave an interview to the weekly magazine insert of Le Parisiendaily. The media availability was ostensibly to promote Gayet's new campaign against sexism. But French political observers note the choice to speak to the press may indicate that she is set to take on the "first lady" role for Hollande, who is suffering dismal approval ratings ahead of his expected campaign for reelection early next year.

The Hollande-Gayet affair was revealed by Closer magazine, which published a photo of the black-helmeted president arriving for a tryst with his mistress on a scooter. At the time, he was still living with his longtime partner, French journalist Valérie Trierweiler.

Hollande has four children with former presidential candidate and current Minister for the Environment Ségolène Royal.

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.


The Pope's Bronchitis Can't Hide What Truly Ails The Church — Or Whispers Of Succession

It is not only the health of the Pope that worries the Holy See. From the collapse of vocations to the conservative wind in the USA, there are many ills to face.

 Pope Francis reaches over to tough the hands of devotees during his  General Audience at the Vatican.​

November 29, 2023: Pope Francis during his wednesday General Audience at the Vatican.

Evandro Inetti/ZUMA
Gianluigi Nuzzi

ROME — "How am I? I'm fine... I'm still alive, you know? See, I'm not dead!"

With a dose of irony and sarcasm, Pope Francis addressed those who'd paid him a visit this past week as he battled a new lung inflammation, and the antibiotic cycles and extra rest he still must stick with on strict doctors' orders.

For the latest news & views from every corner of the world, Worldcrunch Today is the only truly international newsletter. Sign up here.

The Pope is dealing with a sensitive respiratory system; the distressed tracheo-bronchial tree can cause asthmatic reactions, with the breathlessness in his speech being the most obvious symptom. Tired eyes and dark circles mark his swollen face. A sense of unease and bewilderment pervades and only diminishes when the doctors restate their optimism about his general state of wellness.

"The pope's ailments? Nothing compared to the health of the Church," quips a priest very close to the Holy Father. "The Church is much worse off, marked by chronic ailments and seasonal illnesses."

Keep reading...Show less

The latest