Julie Delpy will return to French filmmaking with “Lolo,” a high-profile satirical comedy starring Dany Boon (“Welcome to the Cht’is”) and Karin Viard (“Polisse”).
Delpy stars as Violette, a 40-year old workaholic with a career in the fashion industry who falls for a provincial computer geek, Jean-Rene (Boon), while on a spa retreat with her best friend (Viard). The promising romance starts to unravel when Jean-René meets Violette’s cherished 20-year old son, Lolo (played by French up-and-comer Vincent Lacoste), and discovers their unusual relationship.
“This film deals with universal themes: We have a relationship between two people who come from opposite worlds but are drawn to each other; and we also touch on – in a humorous way — the issues that single mothers in their 40’s face when looking for love,” said Michael Gentile, who is producing the movie via his Paris-based outfit The Film.
Delpy penned the script with Eugenie Grandval, who previously collaborated with Frederic Beigbeder on the screenplay of romantic comedy “Love Lasts Three Years,” and worked at Paul Haggis’ Highway 61, where she co-produced Russell Crowe starrer “The Next Three Days.”
“Lolo” is set to start lensing on Oct. 6 in Paris, Biarritz and London. The key crew comprises well-seasoned cinematographer Thierry Arbogast, whose latest credits include Scarlett Johasson starrer “Lucy.”
Stephane Celerier’s Mars Distribution will distribute in France. Wild Bunch handles international sales. Budgeted in the $10 million range, “Lolo” is fully-financed and co-produced with France 2 Cinema, Mars Films and Delpy’s shingle Tempete sous un crane. It’s been pre-bought by French pubcaster France Television, Canal Plus, Cineplus and D8.
Gentile produced Delpy’s last French-language film, “Le Skylab,” a 1979-set ensemble comedy which won the special jury prize at San Sebastian.
In the States, Delpy is best known for her role opposite Ethan Hawke in Richard Linklater’s “Before Midnight,” “Before Sunset” and “Before Sunrise,” which she also co-wrote. Delpy, who studied film at NYU and is based in Los Angeles, earned an Oscar nomination at this year’s Academy Awards for “Before Midnight”‘s script (shared with Linklater and Hawke) and a Golden Globe for her performance.
Delpy has also made successful incursions into English-language directing with “Two Days in New York” and “Two Days in Paris.”
Gentile’s shingle The Film has a track record in producing both successful local comedies such as “Love Lasts Three Years” and auteur-driven dramas like Atiq Rahimi’s “The Patience Stone.”