Say bonjour to Azazel Jacobs' adaptation of Patrick deWitt's "tragedy of manners," out Feb. 12.

"Do you know what a cliché is?" Michelle Pfeiffer asks in the trailer for French Exit. "It's a story so fine that it's grown old in its hopeful retelling."

Pfeiffer stars in Azazel Jacobs' darkly witty comedy as Frances Price, a widowed socialite who, after going broke, escapes New York City to finish out her days in Paris in the high style of a well-worn cliché — though the film itself is anything but. An adaptation of Patrick deWitt's 2018 novel, billed as a "tragedy of manners," Jacobs' surreal Exit opens Feb. 12 (EW can exclusively reveal the first trailer, above) and sees Pfeiffer in a weird and wonderful role brilliantly suited to her, positioning the legendary actress as a possible contender in this year's Best Actress race.

"I really loved this character," Pfeiffer tells EW. "I loved the book so much, and I couldn't put it down. I was so entertained, and I found [these characters] very moving and quirky." The film costars Lucas Hedges as Frances' ineffectual adult son, Malcolm, as well as Danielle Macdonald as a psychic medium and Valerie Mahaffey as a fellow American expat, with whom Frances and Malcolm form a sort of mismatched community à Paris. "I think it explores relationships and deep friendships and [how] people can lead such different lives but still be incredibly connected," Pfeiffer says. "I think life is all of those things."

French Exit
Credit: Sony Pictures Classics

French Exit premiered in October as part of the New York Film Festival, where critics were mixed on the movie but in agreement on Pfeiffer's dazzling turn at its center — a markedly different tone than her other recent releases.

"It was actually a very, very busy year for me," the actress says of 2019, in which her enormous Disney titles Avengers: Endgame and Maleficent: Mistress of Evil both came out. "Honestly, [shooting] came at the end of the year and I wasn't sure if I was going to have enough stamina left. I was so happy that I did, because when you have a great experience on something and you're working with people who really inspire you and on material that really inspires you, it actually recharges you. So I feel really lucky."

Video courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics.

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