The novel centers around Myriam who decides to return to work as a lawyer after having children. Myriam and her husband find the perfect nanny in Louise, who sings to the children, cleans the family’s apartment, hardly complains, and hosts enviable kiddie parties. But as the couple and the nanny become more dependent on one another, jealousy, resentment, and suspicions mount, shattering the idyllic tableau. The book was originally published by Gallimard in France in 2016 and by Penguin in the US in 2018. Why Not and Pan-Européenne are currently in post on the French-language adaptation of The Perfect Nanny.
The novel was awarded France’s highest literary prize, the Prix Goncourt, in 2016, and translation rights sold in a bidding war in 40 territories. The American version made The New York Times Book Review’s 10 Best Books of the Year list in 2018 while in the UK, the novel titled Lullaby won Debut of the Year at the British Book Awards 2019. The novel is known for its exploration of race and class divide against the realization of a universal fear: the death of one’s children.
Slimani was ranked on Vanity Fair France’s annual list of The Fifty Most Influential French People in the World and tapped by President Emmanuel Macron as France’s top emissary for promoting the use of the French language. She was the first French-Moroccan woman to win France’s most prestigious literary prize, the Goncourt.
Pascal Caucheteux of Why Not Productions and Phillippe Gordeau of Pan-Européenne are producing with Rosa Attab of Why Not serving as EP. Mary Parent will produce and Ali Mendes will executive produce for Legendary. Slimani will also serve as EP. Legendary’s VP of Literary Affairs Deborah Kaufmann will also oversee.