By wanting to release its film in the United States, the team of the “Good Lord” encountered a violent controversy which prevented French comedy from reaching American theaters. But why ?
When it was released in 2014, What did we do to the Good Lord? The counters are thrilling, totaling more than 12 million admissions in France, or more than 72 million euros in revenue. The comedy carried by Chantal Lauby and Christian Clavier becomes one of the most important successes of French cinema, and the production intends to capitalize on it, by releasing the film abroad.
If in Europe, the film manages to total more than 75 million dollars, the American release of the film will prove to be complicated. It is however endowed with an English title: Serial (Bad) Weddings, but the subject of the film is considered racist:
“Our contacts found it politically incorrect.”, then confided Sabine Chemaly, international sales director of TF1, to the Point. “Today they would never allow themselves to laugh at blacks, Jews or Asians “.
“They are obviously excited by the success of the film, but they refuse to broadcast it as is. They know that it will immediately create too much controversy for them.”
The springs of comedy are different, she continues. In these countries, we do not know how to laugh at the differences, we live with it, but we do not accept caricature on the subject, even with the distance that comedy brings.
However, at the time, the United States said it was ready to produce a remake of the film. On this subject, Christian Clavier had confided to our microphone at the time:
“They are very keen to do it and we will be delighted to participate”, but when? When they have found the right idea and are sure to bring you something interesting. At that point they will start. “
Seven years later, the remake has not moved forward and the original film still has not been released on American soil.
“Le Bon Dieu” is not the first French comedy to have paid the price for this decision, since Intouchables had been judged racist by a critic of Variety, but the film by the Toledano-Nakache duo had managed to be released in the United States.
For another big success of French cinema, Intouchables, the American remake took place, with Kevin Hart in the role once played by Omar Sy and Bryan Cranston in that of François Cluzet. Titled The Upside, and despite hostile reviews from the American press, the film raised $ 125.8 million for a budget of $ 37.5 million.
Without an American remake, What did we do to the good Lord? had two sequels, What have we done to the Good Lord? (6.7 million admissions in France), and What have we all done to the good Lord? which will be released on February 2, 2022 in theaters.