Netflix is reportedly considering offering a version of its popular original series House of Cards en francais, with none other than famous French actor Gerard Depardieu playing the lead role of Frank Underwood (or, directly translated, might he be Frank Sousbois?) According to Deadline, Netflix is already in talks with the the actor for the series, which will be called Marseille.
If the series gets the green light it would be Netflix’s first original French-language series produced in France. It would not, however, make House of Cards new to Europe. The American series is, of course, based on the original British BBC series of the same name, which starred Ian Richards as Francis Urquhart, and aired back in the ‘90s.
Deadline reports that the new series, while inspired by the Netflix tentpole, will not be an exact replica of the racy Kevin Spacey drama. Rather, it will focus on Robert Taro, mayor of a French city who, after many years in office, finds himself pitted against a younger, hipper new candidate. Twisting the knife deeper, the upstart opponent was formerly Taro’s protégé! Sac le bleu!
The series will consist of eight episodes, all written by Dan Franck (Carlos) and produced by Pascal Breton’s Federation Entertainment. Florent-Emilio Siri (Cloclo) will direct the first two episodes, and Samuel Benchetrit (J’ai toujours reve d’etre un gangster) may be on board to direct a few episodes as well.
While Netflix hasn’t confirmed Depardieu’s involvement, he would be a logical candidate if Netflix hopes to generate buzz surrounding the show, both in France and the U.S. – Depardieu is, of course, a well-recognized, relatively high-profile actor in both countries.
This show would not mark the first French-language content available through Netflix: the Canadian version of the site first offered French-language content for French-speaking Canadians in 2012, and has since added plenty more programs in the language of amour.