Disney+ Announces New French Originals Including First Local Feature – Deadline
Disney+ has announced a new round of French-language original productions, including its first feature, the romantic thriller Une Zone à Défendreand the second season of the hit comedy show Weekend family.
Set against the backdrop of a world of eco-protesters, Une Zone à Défendre is Romain Cogitore’s third feature film after the Second World War drama 15 boys and romance The territory of love.
Lyna Khoudri co-stars as a woman campaigning to stop the construction of a dam in a conservation area, opposite François Civil as an undercover policeman who infiltrates her group of eco-activists
“I want to explore environmental and political issues within the framework of a love story to tell a moment in our contemporary history,” Cogitore explained in a Disney+ release.
Disney+ has teamed up with Nicolas Dumont and Hugo Soulignac at Chi-Fou Mi Productions. The credits of their Paris-based company include submarine thrillers The wolf’s call and Marseille-set corrupt police drama The Strongholdwhich was an international streaming hit for Netflix last year.
French-Algerian actress Khoudri made waves internationally in Cannes 2019 Un Certain Regard breakout Papicha and also in the ensemble cast of Wes Anderson’s The French dispatch. Civil is soon to be seen in the role of D’Artagnan in Pathé’s upcoming big budget The Three Musketeers start over.
Pauline Dauvin, VP, programming, production and acquisitions at The Walt Disney Company France, said the feature marked an important step for the company’s activities in France.
“It’s a new adventure that begins for us today, a big project with a prestigious cast and a very nice collaboration with the whole team,” she said
“This story, which deals with a romance against the background of a protest movement, perfectly complements the previous original local productions launched this year on Disney+ and strengthens our position as a privileged partner for French production.”
The platform also announced that it is behind the second season of Weekend family, which launched on the platform last February as its first original series. The blended family comedy-drama stars Eric Judor as a man juggling exes, daughters and a new partner.
“We are excited to renew the series for another season and catch up with Eric Judor, Daphne Côté-Hallé and the entire cast from Season 1,” Dauvin said.
The eight-part season will be directed by Julien Guetta and Hafid F. Benamar and is produced by Paris-based production house Elephant. The new season will premiere in 2023, exclusively on Disney+.