Unconventional country girl Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette has married a charismatic egomaniacal man of letters, 14 years her senior, known by the single name, Willy. Through his auspices, Colette is introduced into the fecund world of the artistic demimonde in Paris where her creative appetite is sparked. Ever quick to capitalise on talent, Willy permits Colette to write her novels only if she does so in his name. The phenomenal success of her Claudine series makes Willy a famous writer and Colette and Willy the first modern celebrity couple. Although they are the toast of the town, lack of recognition for her work begins to gnaw on Colette. Their marriage starts to internally combust – but emotionally and artistically, she cannot break free of him. On a downward slide, Willy resorts to increasingly desperate measures to pay his debts and sabotage his wife but Colette is developing resources of her own.

Colette is out in cinemas from 11 January.