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PRODUCTION France

It’s all laughs for Jeunet and Debbouze

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Although Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s US adaptation of Yann Martel’s Life of Pi has been put on hold, considered too costly by Fox, work has begun on the director’s sixth feature: Micmacs à tire-larigot (“Playing Games to Your Heart’s Content”).

Shooting will start in April 2008 on this satirical comedy whose cast will include the star Jamel Debbouze (Best Actor Award at Cannes 2006 for Days Of Glory [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Jean Bréhat
interview: Rachid Bouchareb
film profile
]
), who previously worked with the director on The Fabulous Destiny of Amelie Poulain (2001).

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Set in the world of arms dealing, Micmacs was co-written by the director and Guillaume Laurant (Sandrine Bonnaire’s partner), who wrote some of the dialogue for The City of Lost Children (1995) and co-wrote with Jeunet the screenplays for Amelie (with an Oscar nomination in the bag) and A Very Long Engagement (2004).

The €27m production is piloted by Frédéric Brillion and Gilles Legrand for Epithète Films and co-produced by Tapioca Films (Jeunet’s company) in association with Warner France, who will distribute the film domestically in 2009.

Ever since Delicatessen (1991), Jeunet has established himself as one of France’s most original directors, successfully combining his own creative vision with the demands of Hollywood, such as in Alien: Resurrection (1997).

For his part, Debbouze has become one of French cinema’s most sought-after actors in recent years, along with Jean Dujardin. He’ll soon be appearing in a small role in Asterix at the Olympic Games [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
(to be released January 30, 2008), in Mathieu Kassovitz’s Babylon A.D. [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
(released on February 27) and in Agnès Jaoui’s Parlez-moi de la pluie (“Talk to Me About the Rain”, see article).

(Translated from French)

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