There’s Paris, the City of Light. And there’s Paris, the final new international drama to premiere on MHz Networks’ Worldview channel.
Written by Virginie Brac (Spiral) and directed by Gilles Banier (Spiral), Paris is a six-part French serial à la Robert Altman’s Short Cuts.
During one 24-hour period, the lives of diverse characters from a cross-section of Parisian society intersect each other. Government officials, middle-class workers, a thief, and a transgender singer — they are all interconnected, whether they know it or not. By the end of the 24 hours, the sun will have risen over Paris once again and each character will have reached a turning point in their lives.
The series opens in the darkness of the pre-dawn morning. Paris is beginning to wake up.
Public transportation worker and union delegate Cathy Penmarch (Nanou Garcia, Zouzou) arrives at the bus depot, where talk amongst her coworkers centers on a strike warning to protest a new law that would make their working conditions even worse. And if they bring down the Prime Minister while they’re at it, so be it.
Yvon Penmarch (Luc-Antoine Diqueiro, Hotel du Paradis), Cathy’s husband and a public bus driver, learns that he’s been barred from driving due to the number of points on his personal license. It’s the law, but he doesn’t care, so he hijacks a bus.
In a Pigalle cabaret, transgender entertainer Alexia (Sarah-Jane Sauvegrain, The Churchmen) sings for the men in the audience while, in a room downstairs, her close friend Ange (Jérôme Robart, Nicolas Le Floch) plays poker. Badly. Now he owes the dangerous Sacha (Kool Shen, Abuse of Weakness) even more money.
Just after 8 AM, Prime Minister Michel Ardent (François Loriquet, A French Village) listens to a disturbing radio report while being chauffeured to his residence at l’Hôtel Matignon, where his wife Alice (Florence Pernel, The Conquest) doesn’t understand why their son Clément (Thomas Doret, Witnesses) doesn’t want to go to school.
Michel’s mind, though, is on his possible career-ending dilemma. He believes someone is scapegoating him in a government corruption case, and calls his childhood friend, Attorney General Pierre Lanvin (Éric Caravaca, Affaire de famille), for support.
And while preparing to go to her job as a housekeeper for Pierre, his wife Noémie (Stéphanie Murat, Quantum Love), and their daughter, the very pregnant Leïla (Sonia Amori, Crossing Lines) finds something hidden in a drawer by her recently-paroled husband Mansour (Rachid Chaib, C.I.D.). She in turn hides it in the vanity case that she takes with her to work.
As the day progresses…
Cathy cannot, will not face the truth about a family member.
Yvon goes on a rampage at the depot.
Alexia helps another person in need.
Ange burgles a home, only things don’t go according to Holye.
Clément is attacked and taken in and nursed by a stranger.
Alice is distraught about her son.
Michel is about to face his critics and the nation on live television.
Leïla realizes too late that she left her vanity case on the bus.
Noémie discovers something unsavory about her husband.
And Ange passes by someone he recognizes while at the police station.
Additional cast members include Félicité Wouassi (Happenstance) as Magali, an aide to the Prime Minister, Émilie Deville (La main blanche) as Coline Sergent, and François Chattot (The Minister) as Loïc Penmarch.
The remaining four episodes will be available on MHz Choice, MHz Networks’ new subscription video-on-demand service, beginning this Sunday, 3 May 2015.
Read more about MHz Choice here.