Jacques Audiard

When a former Tamil Tiger, a woman and a girl pretend to be a family to escape the civil war in Sri Lanka and obtain a refugee status in France, they end up living in a Paris suburb. While hardly knowing each other, they try to build a life together.

In a refugee camp former Tamil Tiger Sivadhasan gets his hands on a passport belonging to Dheepan, a fellow countryman who passed away. He steals the latter’s identity and creates a fake family with Yalini, a woman he hardly knows, and Illayaal, an orphan girl from the camp, in order to obtain political asylum in Europe.

Together they travel to Europe, ending up in a dreary Paris suburb where drug gangs rule. Dheepan gets a job as a janitor and Yalini finds work taking care of an old man. But building a new life with people you do not actually know, in a place full of criminals, turns out to be a major challenge.

Fascinating migrant drama by Jacques Audiard (Un prophète, De rouille et d’os) that won the Golden Palm at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival.


Jacques Audiard
Country of production
115 minutes
Spoken language
French, Tamil
Production company
Why Not Productions
World Sales
Celluloid Dreams
Dutch distributor
Lumiere Publishing