PARIS– Australia’s SBS, the U.K.’s Sky and TV5 Canada have come on board “Hedonist” (working title), Gerard Depardieu’s documentary series.
Sold by Christophe Bochnacki’s Paris-based Balanga, “Hedonist” is produced by Les Films d’Ici, the well-established company behind “Waltz With Bashir” and “Cathedrals of Culture.”
Balanga is in talks to close Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Sweden, Swizterland and the U.S. and expects to ink deals at Mipcom.
The 10-episode documentary series, commissioned by France’s Arte and Canal Plus, will be hosted by Depardieu. The actor will travel across European regions – including Tuscany, Sicilia, Bavaria, Brittany, Scotland, the Basque country and Andalucia — to explore their culinary specialities and history. In each episode, Depardieu will team up with Laurent Audiot, the chef of his Paris restaurant La Fontaine de Gaillon, and will invite one of his celebrity friends, notably Catherine Deneuve, Roberto Benigni and Philip Kerr, to take part in his journey.
“For me it’s the spirit of nature, it’s the soul of life. You become what you eat. So what we try to do is to find some people who work with that honesty,” said Depardieu about the show.
Bochnacki, former head of acquisitions and sales at Havas-owned Upside Distribution, said the show will be a TV event, “bringing the best television and cinema talent together, on the same plate! The best methods of cinema are brought to bear to excellent effect: wide angles, cinematographic lighting, steadycam, aerials and narrative rigor.”