French actress Julie Delpy believes men only date her because they are enamoured with her character in the 1995 romantic movie Before Sunrise.

But Delpy, who is again starring alongside Ethan Hawke in this year's (04) sequel Before Sunset, confesses she's more cynical than her screen persona of CELINE.

And the differing characteristics have left some former boyfriends, who are unable to distinguish between art and real-life, confused.

Delpy says, "I had boyfriends fall in love with character, Celine, then they'd realize I'm not her and they'd dump me.

"I'm not as romantic as Celine - I'm much more down-to-earth, and kind of tough.

"My personality is about 90 per cent darkness and 10 per cent light, though I do have a sense of humour about it."

In the follow-up to the cult favourite - Celine and JESSE (played by ETHAN HAWKE) meet up again nine years after their first encounter in Paris where he is promoting his book and she lives.

Delpy - who helped write the dialogue - explains, "In your 30s, you have more of a sense of humour about things, especially love.

"You're more resigned to reality. In 'Sunrise' Celine was kind of soft, so this time I wanted her to have more of an edge.

"I wanted Celine to capture that contradiction I see in a lot of my female friends - how they're extremely strong and intelligent, but fall apart when they're heartbroken.

"And though I'm much less emotional, I can relate to that."

06/07/2004 17:34