Emily in Paris
|Created by||Darren Star|
|Theme music composer||James Newton Howard|
|Composer||Chris Alan Lee|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||20|
|Production locations||Île-de-France, France|
|Running time||24–38 minutes|
|Distributor||Netflix Streaming Services|
|Picture format||4K (UHDTV)|
|Audio format||5.1 surround|
|Original release||October 2, 2020 –|
Set and filmed in Paris, the series stars Lily Collins as the eponymous Emily, an American who moves to France to provide an American point of view to Savoir, a French marketing firm. There, she struggles to succeed in the workplace while searching for love and experiencing a culture clash with her "boring" and mundane Midwestern U.S. upbringing. It also stars Philippine Leroy-Beaulieu, Ashley Park, Lucas Bravo, Samuel Arnold, Bruno Gouery, Camille Razat, and William Abadie.
Produced by MTV Entertainment Studios and originally developed for Paramount Network, where it was given a straight-to-series order in September 2018, the series moved to Netflix on July 2020. Filming takes place in Île-de-France, mainly in Paris and its suburbs, and began in August 2019.
Emily in Paris premiered on October 2, 2020, to positive reviews in the United States but was criticized in France with many French critics condemning the show for negatively stereotyping Parisians and the French. In November 2020, the series was renewed for a second season by Netflix, which started filming in May 2021 and premiered on December 22, 2021. In January 2022, the series was renewed for a third and fourth season by Netflix.
Emily in Paris follows Emily, a driven 20-something American from Chicago who moves to Paris for an unexpected job opportunity. She is tasked with bringing an American point of view to a venerable French marketing firm. Cultures clash as she adjusts to the challenges of life in Paris while juggling her career, new friendships, and love life.
Cast and characters
- Lily Collins as Emily Cooper, a 29 year old American who moves from Chicago to Paris for a social media strategy job at Savoir
- Philippine Leroy-Beaulieu as Sylvie, Emily's tough and bitter French boss at Savoir in Paris
- Ashley Park as Mindy Chen, a Chinese Korean nanny and Emily's first friend in Paris
- Lucas Bravo as Gabriel, Emily's attractive downstairs neighbor, who is a chef and Emily's love interest and Camille's boyfriend. In season 2 Emily and he decide to remain just friends.
- Samuel Arnold as Julien, Emily's co-worker, trendy and high drama, he plays a funny duo with Luc
- Bruno Gouery as Luc, Emily's quirky other co-worker, he plays a humorous duo with Julien
- Camille Razat as Camille, Emily's new friend and Gabriel's girlfriend
- William Abadie as Antoine Lambert (season 2; recurring season 1), Emily's client who owns a perfume company called Maison Lavaux and is having an affair with Sylvie
- Kate Walsh as Madeline Wheeler, Emily's American boss in Chicago who cannot take the job in Paris after learning that she is pregnant
- Jean-Christophe Bouvet as Pierre Cadault, a famous flamboyant French designer and uncle of Mathieu
- Charles Martins as Mathieu Cadault, business man who becomes a love interest of Emily. Emily and him break up at the beginning of Season 2.
- Céline Menville as Jacqueline (season 2; guest season 1), Emily's French teacher
- Kevin Dias as Benoît (season 2), Mindy's love interest and a member of her band
- Jin Xuan Mao as Étienne (season 2), a member of Mindy's band
- Lucien Laviscount as Alfie (season 2), an English banker in Emily's French class. He becomes Emily's love interest as well.
- Alice Révérend as Natalie (season 2), a bartender at Chez Lavaux
- Charley Fouquet as Catherine Lambert (seasons 1-2), Antoine's wife
- Édith Le Merdy as Emily's concierge (seasons 1-2)
- Camille Japy as Louise (seasons 1-2), Camille's mother
- Christophe Guybet as Gerard (seasons 1-2), Camille's father
- Victor Meutelet as Timothée (seasons 1-2), the younger brother of Camille
- Hanaé Cloarec-Bailly and Tytouan Cloarec-Bailly as Sybil & Laurent Dupont (season 1), the two children that Mindy nannies
- Arnaud Viard as Paul Brossard (season 1), the owner of Savoir
- Roe Hartrampf as Doug (season 1), Emily's boyfriend in Chicago
- Claude Perron as Patricia (season 1), an employee at Savoir
- Eion Bailey as Randy Zimmer (season 1), a well-known hotel owner
- Aleksandra Yermak as Klara (season 1), representative of Hästens, a Swedish luxury bed maker
- Julien Floreancig as Thomas (season 1), a French snob, philosophy professor
- Carlson Young as Brooklyn Clark (season 1), a young and famous American actress
- Elizabeth Tan as Li (season 1), Mindy's best friend who has brought her five bridesmaids to Paris to shop for her bride's dress
- David Prat as Théo (season 1), Camille's other brother
- Faith Prince as Judith Robertson (season 1), a member of The American Friends of the Louvre
- Isaiah Hodges and Christophe Tek as Grey Space (season 1), a duo of avant-garde designers
- Arnaud Binard as Laurent Grateau (season 2), Sylvie's husband
- Jeremy O. Harris as Grégory Elliot Duprée (season 2), Pierre Cadault's rival
- Daria Panchenko as Petra (season 2), a woman in Emily's french class
- Søren Bregendal as Erik DeGroot (season 2), a photographer and love interest for Sylvie
- Ellen Von Unwerth as herself (season 2), a photographer hired for Pierre Cadault's photo shoot
- Julien Looman as Gerhard (season 2), Ellen Von Unwerth's agent and Julien's Love Interest
- Luca Ivoula as Raphael (season 2), the new chef at Gabriel's restaurant
|1||10||October 2, 2020|
|2||10||December 22, 2021|
Season 1 (2020)
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original release date|
|1||1||"Emily in Paris"||Andrew Fleming||Darren Star||October 2, 2020|
|Emily's boss Madeline prepares to make the transition from the Chicago based pharmaceutical marketing firm, the Gilbert Group, to a French based fashion firm, Savoir, when she discovers that she is pregnant. Savoir offers the job to Emily and she accepts, leaving her boyfriend back in Chicago. Emily moves to Paris despite the fact that she does not speak French. She moves into the 5th floor of an old apartment building without an elevator but with a wonderful Parisian view. Emily creates an Instagram account, @emilyinparis, and begins documenting her time in Paris. Emily starts her first day of work much to the chagrin of her new co-workers, who reveal that she was only hired because of a business deal. She introduces the French, who seem very reluctant about her and her American methods, to American social media strategies. Emily accidentally tries to enter the wrong apartment and meets her very attractive neighbor, Gabriel. As Emily becomes accustomed to life in Paris she makes countless faux-pas and the firm nicknames her "la plouc" or "the hick". Emily meets Mindy Chen, a nanny originally from Shanghai, and they become fast friends. After Emily and her boyfriend attempt to have cybersex but the connection fails, she plugs in her vibrator and accidentally short-circuits the block's power.|
|2||2||"Masculin Féminin"||Andrew Fleming||Darren Star||October 2, 2020|
Despite struggling to fit in with French office culture Emily convinces her boss, Sylvie, to invite her to a work party where she accidentally irritates Sylvie by conversing with Antoine Lambert, a client who turns out to be Sylvie's married lover. As punishment she is put to work marketing Vaga-Jeune, a lubricant for menopausal women. Annoyed with the gendered nature of the French language Emily writes a post about the product that goes viral causing her to make further inroads at work.Emily's boyfriend tells her that she should return to Chicago, since he struggles with a long distance relationship, and he does not want to visit Paris, despite a pre-planned trip. She declines returning to Chicago and breaks off the relationship. She turns to Mindy for emotional support.
|3||3||"Sexy or Sexist"||Andrew Fleming||Darren Star||October 2, 2020|
Emily is invited to the shoot for De l'Heure's latest commercial to take behind the scenes footage for social media and is shocked to discover the commercial involves a model strutting nude down the Pont Alexandre III while suited men stare at her. She argues with Antoine that the ad is sexist while he counters that it is sexy leading Emily to suggest an online marketing campaign that asks the perfume's customers what they think. When the campaign goes viral Antoine sends Emily La Perla lingerie as a thank you gift.Mindy offers to throw a dinner party to help Emily meet new people but the party instead turns into a rager. Despite meeting a cute French boy Emily ends up going back to Gabriel's restaurant.
|4||4||"A Kiss Is Just A Kiss"||Zoe Cassavetes||Kayla Alpert||October 2, 2020|
While struggling to communicate at a flower shop Emily is rescued by Camille, a friendly French stranger and gallery owner who proves to be a lucrative connection.When Emily discovers Sylvie and Antoine arguing at work she tries to boost Sylvie's credibility at work by pretending that she came up with an idea to pair Antoine's perfumes with luxury hotels.
|5||5||"Faux Amis"||Zoe Cassavetes||Ali Waller and Joe Murphy||October 2, 2020|
|6||6||"Ringarde"||Andrew Fleming||Matt Whitaker||October 2, 2020|
|Emily joins Sylvie and Julien on a visit to the atelier of haute couturier Pierre Cadault. Pierre is mortified by the gauche charm on Emily's handbag and calls her a "basic bitch" in French, which hinders her credibility in the firm. At Café de Flore, Emily meets Thomas, a French philosophy professor. They hit it off and she invites him back to her apartment and they have sex. Emily and Thomas encounter Gabriel and Camille, and Camille invites them to join them at a tapas restaurant. Thomas and Gabriel do not get along. The next day, Gabriel tells Emily he thinks Thomas is a snob, and not worthy of her. Emily discovers Pierre has designed the costumes for Swan Lake so she invites Thomas to join her. However, he insults her by telling her Swan Lake is a ballet for tourists. Emily realizes that he is a snob so she leaves him. She sees Pierre at the ballet so she walks into his private box to talk to him so he will remain with Savoir.|
|7||7||"French Ending"||Andrew Fleming||Emily Goldwyn and Sarah Choi||October 2, 2020|
|8||8||"Family Affair"||Andrew Fleming||Grant Sloss||October 2, 2020|
|Camille invites Emily to lunch and asks if Savoir could take on her family's champagne vineyard as a client. Mindy's friend and her five bridesmaids are in Paris for wedding dress shopping. Camille invites Emily to meet her family at their chateau. Gabriel surprises Emily by joining them for the weekend trip which makes Emily uncomfortable. Emily takes a tour of the winery and meets Camille's younger brother Timothée. Gabriel refuses Camille's mother's offer of a business loan. At a club where Mindy's girlfriends are partying, they force her on stage to sing the song she flubbed on Chinese Popstar. Back at the chateau, Camille and her mother are arguing so Emily takes refuge by the pool where she is joined by Timothée. They drink champagne and eventually have sex. At breakfast, she learns that Timothée is not the brother Camille was referring to, instead, it was her younger, 17-year-old brother. Emily meets Théo, Camille's older and more age appropriate brother. Emily finally gets an opportunity to pitch her idea to Camille's mother.|
|9||9||"An American Auction in Paris"||Peter Lauer||Alison Brown||October 2, 2020|
|Sylvie is unimpressed with Emily's idea to market Camille's family's champagne. Emily meets Judith Robertson who is a member of the American Friends of the Louvre (AFL). She is aware of Emily's association with Pierre Cadault and asks if Pierre might be willing to donate a dress to be auctioned at AFL's fundraising benefit. Emily calls Mathieu Cadault to arrange a meeting so she can ask him about the dress donation. They agree to meet at an art opening at Camille's gallery. Sylvie and Luc also arrive at the opening to meet Camille. At the AFL auction, Grey Space, which consists of two avant-garde fashion designers, show up and bid for Pierre's dress. As Emily models the dress on stage, Grey Space shoots her with paint as a publicity stunt which shocks the audience. The next day, the stunt is featured in all the newspapers and online. Pierre is despondent and takes to his bed. Emily visits him to try and positively spin the incident, but to no avail. As she leaves Pierre's home, she runs into Mathieu who makes a pass at her.|
|10||10||"Cancel Couture"||Peter Lauer||Grant Sloss||October 2, 2020|
|Mathieu takes Emily on a date. A boat cruise on the Seine, then shows her the view of Paris from his apartment, their date is interrupted by a call from Pierre who is threatening to cancel his fashion show. Pierre is holed up in his atelier and won't show his new collection to anyone. Sylvie blames Emily for shaking Pierre's confidence and fires her. Emily's co-workers inform her that in France it can be a long, arduous process to fire an employee. To realize his dream of opening his own restaurant, Gabriel decides to move back to Normandy. The next day Emily is called by Mathieu about the situation and tells her that Pierre has requested to see her. Sylvie overhears this and goes with Emily to see Pierre. At the atelier, they see a dress from Pierre's new collection. Pierre orders Mathieu to find him a new venue. Mindy agrees to emcee and sing at a drag bar two nights a week, but when she tells her employers, they fire her so she moves in with Emily. In need of a venue to launch his fashion show, Pierre hijacks the outside of his former venue to show his new look dress collection which the audience loves and makes him the toast of Fashion Week. To celebrate, Emily hosts a dinner at Gabriel's restaurant for Mathieu and Pierre.|
Season 2 (2021)
|Title||Directed by||Written by||Original release date|
|11||1||"Voulez-Vous Coucher Avec Moi?"||Andrew Fleming||Darren Star||December 22, 2021|
|12||2||"Do You Know the Way to St. Tropez?"||Andrew Fleming||Grant Sloss||December 22, 2021|
|13||3||"Bon Anniversaire!"||Andrew Fleming||Alison Brown||December 22, 2021|
|14||4||"Jules and Em"||Peter Lauer||Joe Murphy||December 22, 2021|
|15||5||"An Englishman in Paris"||Katina Medina Mora||Sarah Choi||December 22, 2021|
|16||6||"Boiling Point"||Katina Medina Mora||Alison Brown||December 22, 2021|
|17||7||"The Cook, the Thief, Her Ghost and His Lover"||Jennifer Arnold||Joe Murphy||December 22, 2021|
|18||8||"Champagne Problems"||Jennifer Arnold||Darren Star||December 22, 2021|
|19||9||"Scents & Sensibility"||Andrew Fleming||Sarah Choi||December 22, 2021|
|20||10||"French Revolution"||Andrew Fleming||Grant Sloss||December 22, 2021|
On September 5, 2018, it was announced that Paramount Network had given the production a series order for a first season consisting of 10 episodes. The series was created by Darren Star, who has a multi-year overall deal with ViacomCBS and develops for ViacomCBS and for outsider buyers via MTV Entertainment Studios. Star was also expected to serve as an executive producer alongside Tony Hernandez. Production companies involved with the series were slated to consist of Jax Media. On July 13, 2020, it was reported that the series would move from Paramount Network to Netflix. On November 11, 2020, Netflix renewed the series for a second season. On January 10, 2022, Netflix renewed the series for a third and fourth season.
On April 3, 2019, Lily Collins was cast in the titular role. On August 13, 2019, Ashley Park had joined the main cast. On September 19, 2019, Philippine Leroy-Beaulieu, Lucas Bravo, Samuel Arnold, Camille Razat, and Bruno Gouery joined cast in starring roles, while Kate Walsh, William Abadie, and Arnaud Viard were cast in recurring roles. On May 24, 2021, Lucien Laviscount was cast in recurring role, while Abadie was promoted to series regular for the second season.
Many scenes are filmed at Place de l'Estrapade in the 5th Arrondissement., including the site of Emily's first apartment, the restaurant ("Les Deux Compères"), and the bakery ("La Boulangerie Moderne") . Some scenes are also filmed at Cité du Cinéma, a film studio complex in Saint-Denis. Famous Parisian sites to feature in the series include: Le Grand Véfour, the Pont Alexandre III, Palais Garnier, L'Atelier des Lumières, Rue de l'Abreuvoir, Jardin du Luxembourg, Jardin Du Palais Royale, Café de Flore and the Panthéon. An episode was also filmed at the Château de Sonnay in the department of Indre-et-Loire. Additional photography took place in Chicago during November 2019.
Filming for the second season began on May 3, 2021 and concluded on July 19, 2021. Filming locations for the second season include Paris, Saint-Tropez, and various other locations in France. Filming of the second season in Paris causes problems with the neighborhood - the crew being judged brutal, threatening and too intrusive. For this season, Lily Collins has stated that it's set in a COVID-free world, as the decision was made by the producers to ensure escapism through joy and laughter. In scenes that involved crowds, masks were off when they were on-camera, and back on once completed, which Collins stated was difficult to pull off.
In October 2020, Ashley Park's "La Vie en Rose", a cappella, as Mindy Chen, was heard in episode six, was posted on emilyinparis′s instagram and debuted at number one, on Billboard's Top TV Songs chart, powered by Tunefind. Episode three's Kid Francescoli's (fr) Moon debuted at number four, and episode ten's Cavale's Burst Into Flames debuted at number seven. Alter K, a French music publisher and distributor, made significant contributions to the soundtrack, with half of the songs, being from Alter K′s catalog. James Newton Howard composed the theme music.
Daniel D'Addario of Variety described the series as "a delight that poses the question of what it really means to grow up, against a truly inviting backdrop", and that Collins is "an inherently winsome performer who has never been quite as well used as she is here". Kristen Baldwin of Entertainment Weekly gave the series a "B" and wrote, "If you need a five-hour brain vacation, Paris is a worthwhile destination." The New Zealand Herald considered the show "visually delectable" and that "Collins has a pixie-ish charm which makes her endearing", but also that the show is "as ephemeral as fairy floss". However, Kristen Lopez of IndieWire wrote a review Metacritic graded as a 23 out of a 100, praising Collins for being a "jewel, make no mistake" and that "Emily in Paris is only as watchable and frivolous as its leading lady," but warning viewers "Emily in Paris is like scrolling through Instagram. It's a great way to waste time looking at pretty pictures with no depth."
Nevertheless, not all critics were kind to the Emily character. Emma Gray from HuffPost called Emily a bland character, stating "The show doesn't even make an effort to quirk her up or give her a more relatable, girl-next-door roughness: she's always immaculately coiffed and made-up, and garbed in effortfully eye-catching outfits. But there's not much to the character, except for enormous amounts of self-confidence and the inexplicable ability to attract new friends and love interests on every street corner." Rebecca Nicholson of The Guardian gave the series one out of five stars: "if it is an attempt to fluff up the romcom for the streaming age, then it falls over on its six-inch heels." Rachel Handler opined "Darren Star has done it yet again: centered an entire show on a thin, gently delusional white woman whimsically exploring a major metropolitan area in wildly expensive couture purchased on a mid-level salary."
Sarah Moroz, of Vulture.com, opined "the most egregious oversight ... is Emily herself, who shows zero personal growth over a ten-episode arc. ... Emily's vapidity is baffling to anyone who has moved from their native country."
Sonia Rao, of The Washington Post compares Emily to the heroines of the Amy Sherman-Palladino universe: "Like the Gilmore girls, Emily is strong-willed and refuses to let anything get in the way of her schemes. Like Midge Maisel, her actions can be quite rash, but she still wins over her fictional acquaintances while utterly baffling viewers."
Some critics appeared ambivalent, such as Jo Ellison writing for the Financial Times. On one hand she expresses admiration for the way Darren Star manages to depict "a version of womanhood in which promiscuity, bossiness and shopaholicism are depicted as qualities to be celebrated"; on the other "the major plot lines might have been written in the 1940s and the Frenchies are routinely cast as vain, preening and parochial." She concludes "Cliché-ridden and completely outdated: Darren Star's 'Sex and the Cité' will no doubt be monstrously successful."
Many French critics condemned the show for negatively stereotyping Parisians and the French. Charles Martin wrote in Première that the show unfairly stereotyped and depicted the French as "lazy [individuals who] never arrive at the office before the end of the morning [...] are flirtatious and not really attached to the concept of loyalty [...] are sexist and backward, and [...] have a questionable relationship with showering".
A reviewer at Sens Critique wrote: "Emily in Paris projects the same twee, unrealistic image of Paris that the film Amélie does". RTL.fr wrote: "Rarely had we seen so many clichés on the French capital since the Parisian episodes of Gossip Girl or the end of The Devil Wears Prada."
Megan Garber of The Atlantic was critical of the character Emily, writing, "An expat who acts like a tourist, she judges everything against the backdrop of her own rigid Americanness. You might figure that those moments are evidence of a show poking fun at its protagonist's arrogance, or setting the stage for her to grow beyond her initial provincialism. But: You would be, as I was, mostly incorrect. Instead, other people change around her. They grudgingly concede that her way (strident, striving, teeming with insistent individualism) is the right way. The show—the latest from the Sex and the City creator Darren Star—is selling several fantasies. Primary among them is the notion that Emily can bulldoze her way through France and be celebrated for it.
For the first season, review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reported an approval rating of 63% based on 55 reviews, with an average rating of 5.81/10. The website's critics consensus reads, "Though its depiction of France is tré cliché [sic], Emily in Paris is rom-com fantasy at its finest, spectacularly dressed and filled with charming performances." Metacritic gave the first season a weighted average score of 60 out of 100 based on 17 reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews".
The second season has a 67% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 21 reviews, with an average rating of 5.2/10. The website's critics consensus states, "Emily in Paris remains a sugary soufflé, but it's liable to give a toothache to viewers who are seeking anything deeper than a frivolous romp." On Metacritic, the second season received a score of 64 based on reviews from 11 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".
For the week of October 5, 2020, Emily in Paris reached the top ten list of most watched streaming shows per Nielsen. On May 3, 2021, Netflix revealed that the series has been watched by 58 million households in the month after its debut. The series remained in UK top 10 list for 40 consecutive days after its release.
The show received two nominations at the Golden Globe Awards, but prior to the ceremony it was reported that 30 members of the voting body had been flown to Paris, where they spent two nights at The Peninsula Paris and were treated to a private lunch at the Musée des Arts Forains, with the bill reportedly paid by the show's developer, Paramount Network. This led some critics to question the impartiality of the voting body, as Emily in Paris is considered to have been a critical flop, and its nomination was a surprise. In contrast, critically acclaimed shows, notably I May Destroy You, were not nominated.
Awards and nominations
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