Belgium has submitted Michaël R Roskam’s Racer And The Jailbird as the country’s entry into this year’s Foreign Language Oscar race. The dark romantic thriller stars Matthias Schoenaerts and Adèle Exarchopoulos and is having its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival before heading to Toronto next month. It’s the second submission for Roskam, whose feature debut Bullhead was nominated in the category in 2012.

The pic (original title: Le Fidèle) is a love story set at a racing circuit where gangster Gino meets Benedicte, a wealthy and fearless racing driver. Fierce and loyal, Gigi and Bibi fight for their love against fate, but also against reason and their own weaknesses. Roskam penned the script with Thomas Bidegain and Noé Debré.

The movie was produced by Bart Van Langendonck for Savage Film in co-production with Belgium’s Eyeworks and Frakas Productions, France’s Stone Angels, and New Zealand’s Kaap Holland Film and Submarine.

Newbie distributor Neon will release the film in the U.S. later this year. Wild Bunch is selling international rights.

2017 Foreign Language Film Oscar Submissions

  • AzerbaijanPomegranate Orchard – Ilgar Najaf
  • BelgiumRacer And The Jailbird (Le Fidèle) – Michaël R Roskam
  • Bosnia and HerzegovinaMen Don’t Cry – Alena Drljevića
  • Dominican RepublicWoodpeckers – José Maria Cabral
  • GermanyIn The Fade – Fatih Akin
  • IraqThe Dark Wind – Hussein Hussan
  • NepalSeto Surya (White Sun) – Deepak Rauniyar
  • SwedenThe Square – Ruben Östlund
  • SwitzerlandThe Divine Order – Petra Volpe