Danièle Heymann was born in Paris, the daughter of French filmmaker Claude Heymann. Her first job was at the film society Cinematheque française with founder Henri Langlois. She began her career as a journalist and film critic at the daily France-Soir. After serving as managing editor for L'Express and Le Monde, she moved to the weekly Marianne. From 1977 to 2006, she edited the annual L'Année du cinéma, at times with Pierre Murat and Alain Lacombe. She is a host of the program Le Masque et la Plume on France Inter radio. She was a member of the jury of the Cannes Film Festival in 1987. In 2014 she received the Prix Bernard Chardère from the Institut Lumière, given "for contributions to journalism and film critic, and her love of film, her style, her curiosity and humor." She married Jean Bertola (1922-1989), a musician, composer, and artistic director.