"Les Misérables" has the Cannes Film Festival buzzing — and Amazon Studios opening its wallet.
Amazon has acquired the U.S. rights to writer-director Ladj Ly’s feature debut in one of the biggest domestic deals ever for a French-language movie, around $1-2 million.
The film is inspired by the 2005 Paris riots and Ly’s César-nominated short film of the same name, and is a provocative look into the tensions between neighborhood residents and police.
The story on centers on Stéphane (Damien Bonnard), who has recently joined the anti-crime brigade in Montfermeil, the Paris suburb where Victor Hugo set his classic novel "Les Misérables."
Stéphane soon discovers tensions are running high between local gangs. When he and two friends find themselves overrun during the course of an arrest, a drone captures the encounter, threatening to expose the reality of everyday life.
Ly is a native of Montfermeil, and after the 2005 riots, filmed the neighborhood for a year to make a documentary titled "365 Days In Clichy-Montfermeil."