Screenshot 2023-08-30 at 12.06.15 PM

Source: India Lange / ©Carole Bellaiche

Damien Bonnard and Jeanne Balibar

France TV Distribution has boarded Sylvain Desclous’ sensual French thriller The Victoria System (Le Système Victoria) and will kick off sales in Venice.

Based on popular French author Eric Reinhardt’s best-selling novel of the same name, Desclous’ third fiction feature is currently in production and stars Damien Bonnard and Jeanne Balibar, who also shared the screen in Ladj Ly’s Oscar-nominated debut feature Les Misérables.

The passion-filled story of power, sex and capitalism follows a man (Bonnard) overseeing the construction of the highest tower ever built in France whose life is filled with constant pressure until he meets and becomes mesmerised by the titular Victoria (Balibar), head of HR at a multinational company which runs her life and the lives of her employees with an iron fist.

Soon he gets drawn in to her life of decadence and desire and becomes trapped in Victoria’s fascinating system.

The Victoria System is produced by France’s Madison Films and Cinéfrance who are also behind Anne Fontaine’s upcoming Maurice Ravel biopic Boléro, Between Two Worlds starring Juliette Binoche and the just-announced thriller Serpent’s Path from Japanese filmmaker Kiyoshi Kurosawa that also stars Bonnard. The Jokers will release The Victoria System in France.

Desclous’ previous films include Grand Expectations starring Rebecca Marder and Benjamin Lavernhe, which was released in France in March, 2016 family drama Who’s Your Daddy? (Vendeur) and 2022 political documentary La Campagne de France.

Balibar also stars in Ladj Ly’s TIFF world premiere Les Indésirables while Bonnard has a slew of high-profile roles coming up including Celine Sallette’s Niki and Vincent Perez’s The Edge Of The Blade.

Another of Reinhardt’s novels, L’Amour et Les Forêts, was also recently adapted by Valérie Donzelli for her 2023 Cannes premiere Just The Two Of Us.

Julia Schulte, France TV distribution’s SVP of international sales, described The Victoria System as “a gripping, modern, and universal story about how individuals are manipulated in their human relationships by capitalistic endeavours”.

She added, “We are convinced that the film will attract buyers in Europe and abroad especially with its brilliant cast.”

Also on France TV Distribution’s Fall slate are Benoit Jacquot’s crime drama Belle starring Guillaume Canet and Charlotte Gainsbourg; Jeanne Gottesdiener’s holiday family comedy Christmas Carole; Gilles Legardinier’s Mr Blake At Your Service! starring John Malkovich and Fanny Ardant; and Delphine Deloget’s All To Play For which premiered in Cannes’ Un Certain Regard.