Universal Pictures International (UPI) is partnering with UPI France and Les Films du Kiosque and Ouille Productions on the new French-language comedy You Don’t Choose Your Family (On Ne Choisit Pas Sa Famille).

The project will star Christian Clavier (pictured), Jean Reno, comedienne Muriel Robin and Helena Noguerra.

Clavier (L’enquete, Lovely Rita) makes his feature directorial debut on the film, which he wrote with Michel Delgado.

Producers are François Kraus and Denis Pineau-Valencienne of Les Films du Kiosque with Clavier’s production company Ouille. 

The shoot starts on March 7.

The story follows an unsuccessful car dealer who has an ill-fated trip to Thailand, posing as the husband to his lesbian sister’s girlfriend in order to adopt an orphan. Reno plays the bad-tempered orphanage doctor who suspects they aren’t a real couple.

“The combination of a smart, witty comedy with a stellar cast of the calibre of Jean Réno, Christian Clavier, Muriel Robin and Helena Noguerra who have such a following in France made this an ideal project for us,” said Christian Grass, President of Acquisitions and Production, UPI. “We’re really delighted to be teaming up with François and Denis at Les Films du Kiosque and look forward to working with him and his creative team for the first time on this exciting production.”

“We are extremely pleased to join forces with Christian Clavier in his first directed feature, bringing his huge talent and experience in this hilarious comedy,” added Stéphane Huard, Managing Director, UPI France.

Alexander Jooss, Senior Vice President of Legal and Business Affairs for UPI negotiated the deal for the studio with Kraus Pineau-Valencienne of Les Films du Kiosque.

Clare Wise, UPI’s Executive Vice President of International Production, and JJ Lousberg, Director of European Creative, will oversee the production for UPI (which is co-financing).

UPI France, which recently had a hit with Heartbreaker,  will release the film on Nov 9, 2011. The distributor’s slate also includes drama/mystery Des Vents Contraires; drama/thriller Tu Seras Mon Fils and the comedy Vivre C’est Mieux que Mourir.