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Gerard Depardieu in Talks for Lead Role in Netflix’ French ‘House of Cards’

Gerard Depardieu is in talks to play a role similar to Kevin Spacey’s Francis Underwood in “Marseille,” Netflix’s first French-language production, according to Europe1 news.

Contacted by Variety on Sunday, Netflix declined to comment on the rumor.

Though it’s not based strictly on “House of Cards,” the project has a similar political theme, centering on Robert Taro, mayor of the Southern French city for 25 years. The upcoming elections have him face the man he chose as his successor, an ambitious youngster aiming high. Both candidates will fight mercilessly.

The eight-episode series is created and written by “Carlos” screenwriter Dan Franck. It’s produced and repped in international markets by Pascal Breton’s Federation Entertainment.

The first two episodes of “Marseille” will be directed by Florent-Emilio Siri, director of the Cesar-nominated theatrical hits “My Way” (Cloclo) and “L’Ennemi intime. ” Samuel Benchetrit (“J’ai toujours rêvé d’être un gangster”) will also be directing episodes.

With a career spanning 45 years, Depardieu still makes headlines around the world for his on- and off-screen performances. In 2014, the actor toplined Abel Ferrara’s controversial “Welcome to New York,” a film inspired by the infamous Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s rape case, which was launched by Wild Bunch during Cannes Film Festival.

This year, Depardieu was back at the fest — this time in competition — with Guillaume Nicloux’ “Valley of Love,” which drew a rowdy standing ovation following its official screening.

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