Sony Pictures Entertainment has optioned English-language remake rights to A Prophet for Neal H Moritz and Toby Jaffe to produce through Original Film.

Jacques Audiard’s original crime drama about a prisoner who becomes a crime lord was the talk of Cannes when it premiered in competition in 2009 and went on to win nine César Awards and earned a foreign language Oscar nomination.

Columbia Pictures president Doug Belgrad and production president Hannah Minghella made the announcement on Wednesday [5].

“This is an epic crime saga with compelling characters and original storytelling,” said Original Film founder Moritz. “I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to make an English-language version of the film and I am grateful to have the trust of Jacques Audiard and his producers, as well as the writers Thomas Bidegain, Nicolas Peufaillit, and Abdel Raouf Dafri.”

“We think A Prophet will translate perfectly for English-speaking audiences,” said Minghella. “Obviously, we love working with Neal and he has a great track record with this kind of film – we’re confident that our film will excite audiences in the same way that the original material did.”

Moritz most recently produced the global smash Fast & Furious 6 and is in post-production on R.I.P.D.