Valerie Quennessen became an actress almost by accident. She started out performing as a child as an acrobat. She was very accomplished in this field and won an award at the age of ten. However, she hadn’t seriously considered performing for a living. In her late teens, she enrolled in acting classes as therapy, to overcome severe shyness. To her surprise, she found she enjoyed it and her abilities were noted positively by others. So after briefly attending the Ecole Nationale Superieure des Arts et Techniques du Theatre, she left school to perform full time. She won supporting roles in various projects. Her big break was her role in French Postcards (1979) in 1978. The following year, she completed her studies and traveled to the United States to find roles in Hollywood. She won a role as a princess in Conan the Barbarian (1982), a role she accepted because she had enjoyed fairy tales as a child. She became more familiar to American audiences when she starred in Summer Lovers (1982) with Peter Gallagher and Daryl Hannah. Playing an archaeologist, she dug at an ancient find and, to everyone’s surprise, found some real ancient pottery from some 3,500 years ago. The film achieved box office success, in spite of poor reviews. However, afterwards, she left Hollywood to concentrate on her family life.
In 1989, she died in an automobile accident. She was 31 years old.
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