France Selects Paul Verhoeven’s Isabelle Huppert-Starrer ‘Elle’ As Its Foreign-Language Oscar Entry

Movie marks Verhoeven’s French-language debut

Will Paul Verhoeven, director of “Total Recall” and “Basic Instinct,” be making a Hollywood comeback? A French selection committee has chosen Isabelle Huppert-starrer “Elle,” directed by Verhoeven, as France’s candidate in the foreign-language category of next year’s Academy Awards.

The French-language debut of Verhoeven, “Elle” stars Huppert as the head of a top European video games company who is ruthless in business and in love. Brutally raped, she determines to track down the man who did it, as her life threatens to spiral out of control.

“Elle” won out over three other French films on a shortlist comprising Francois Ozon’s black-and-white drama “Frantz,” which won German lead Paula Beer a best young performer award at Venice; Anne Fontaine’s 1945 Poland-set “The Innocents,” which screened at Sundance; and Daniele Thompson’s “Cezanne and I,” the tale of the onetime friendship between painter Paul Cezanne and author Emile Zola.

Chaired by CNC National Cinema Center head Frederique Bredin, the selection committee was made up of Cannes Festival head Thierry Fremaux, actresses Sandrine Bonnaire and Lea Seydoux (“Spectre”), Unifrance president Jean-Paul Salome, French Academy president Alain Terzain, “The Intouchables” co-director Eric Toledano and French publisher Teresa Cremisi.

A foreign-language Oscar nomination for “Elle” would feel like vindication for its makers after the film garnered some of the best reviews of any competition title at Cannes in May but went home nearly empty-handed.

The Variety review called the movie “a possible career high” for Verhoeven, describing the film as “knowingly incendiary but remarkably cool-headed, and built around yet another of Isabelle Huppert’s staggering psychological dissections.”

Sony Pictures Classics, which has nursed multiple titles over decades to foreign-language Academy Award glory, has acquired U.S. distribution rights.

 

More Film

  • Julio Iglesias Spain's singer Julio Iglesias

    LA Screenings: Disney Media Networks Preps Julio Iglesias Bio-Series (EXCLUSIVE)

    Will Paul Verhoeven, director of “Total Recall” and “Basic Instinct,” be making a Hollywood comeback? A French selection committee has chosen Isabelle Huppert-starrer “Elle,” directed by Verhoeven, as France’s candidate in the foreign-language category of next year’s Academy Awards. The French-language debut of Verhoeven, “Elle” stars Huppert as the head of a top European video […]

  • Cannes Critics’ Week Title ‘Woman at

    Cannes Critics' Week Title 'Woman at War' Sells to Europe, China (EXCLUSIVE)

    Will Paul Verhoeven, director of “Total Recall” and “Basic Instinct,” be making a Hollywood comeback? A French selection committee has chosen Isabelle Huppert-starrer “Elle,” directed by Verhoeven, as France’s candidate in the foreign-language category of next year’s Academy Awards. The French-language debut of Verhoeven, “Elle” stars Huppert as the head of a top European video […]

  • Lebron James Channing Tatum

    Lebron James and Channing Tatum Pitch 'Public Enemy' Lands at New Line

    Will Paul Verhoeven, director of “Total Recall” and “Basic Instinct,” be making a Hollywood comeback? A French selection committee has chosen Isabelle Huppert-starrer “Elle,” directed by Verhoeven, as France’s candidate in the foreign-language category of next year’s Academy Awards. The French-language debut of Verhoeven, “Elle” stars Huppert as the head of a top European video […]

  • Schlock Gems Await Transilvania Crowds Among

    Schlock Gems Await Transilvania Crowd Among Shockproof Selection

    Will Paul Verhoeven, director of “Total Recall” and “Basic Instinct,” be making a Hollywood comeback? A French selection committee has chosen Isabelle Huppert-starrer “Elle,” directed by Verhoeven, as France’s candidate in the foreign-language category of next year’s Academy Awards. The French-language debut of Verhoeven, “Elle” stars Huppert as the head of a top European video […]

  • INCAA To Award $2.6m Annually to

    INCAA Commits $2.6m Annually to International TV and Digital Platform Co-Production

    Will Paul Verhoeven, director of “Total Recall” and “Basic Instinct,” be making a Hollywood comeback? A French selection committee has chosen Isabelle Huppert-starrer “Elle,” directed by Verhoeven, as France’s candidate in the foreign-language category of next year’s Academy Awards. The French-language debut of Verhoeven, “Elle” stars Huppert as the head of a top European video […]

  • Paramount Pictures Commits to ‘Re Loca’

    Paramount Pictures Commits to First Local Movie in Argentina: ‘Re Loca’ (EXCLUSIVE)

    Will Paul Verhoeven, director of “Total Recall” and “Basic Instinct,” be making a Hollywood comeback? A French selection committee has chosen Isabelle Huppert-starrer “Elle,” directed by Verhoeven, as France’s candidate in the foreign-language category of next year’s Academy Awards. The French-language debut of Verhoeven, “Elle” stars Huppert as the head of a top European video […]

  • Lucian Pintilie Inspired Romanian New Wave,

    Lucian Pintilie Inspired Romanian New Wave, Local Filmmakers Say

    Will Paul Verhoeven, director of “Total Recall” and “Basic Instinct,” be making a Hollywood comeback? A French selection committee has chosen Isabelle Huppert-starrer “Elle,” directed by Verhoeven, as France’s candidate in the foreign-language category of next year’s Academy Awards. The French-language debut of Verhoeven, “Elle” stars Huppert as the head of a top European video […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content