Emilia Perez, a musical drama starring Selena Gomez and Zoe Saldana, has received a lengthy standing ovation following its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival.

Directed by Palme d’Or winner Jacques Audiard, it sees Saldana play Rita, an “overqualified and undervalued” lawyer who is offered a way out of her corrupt firm by cartel leader Manitas, portrayed by Karla Sofia Gascon.

Manitas hires Rita to help him withdraw from his business and realise a plan he has been secretly preparing for years – to become the woman he has always dreamt of being – with Gomez portraying his unsuspecting wife.

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The cast and team behind Emilia Perez at the 77th Cannes Film Festival (Doug Peters/PA)

After the film’s debut at the French festival, Audiard and the cast reportedly received an ovation that lasted more than 11 minutes, according to US outlet Deadline.

Gomez, Saldana and Gascon appeared emotional in videos shared online from the event as the audience gave a roaring applause.

The latest film by Audiard is competing for the prestigious Palme d’Or, after the French director previously won it in 2015 for his crime drama Dheepan.

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Selena Gomez donned a black and white gown at the premiere for her new film Emilia Perez (Doug Peters/PA)

Ahead of its premiere, the star-studded cast walked the red carpet together with US singer and actress Gomez donning a black and white gown with an off-the-shoulder neckline that criss-crossed and wrapped around her body.

She accessorised the look with an ornate diamond necklace and her hair was swept into a slick ponytail.

Avatar star Saldana opted for a black column off-the-shoulder dress which was decorated with large peach bows tied around her waist and thighs and the same fabric was used for a voluminous train.

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Zoe Saldana at the Emilia Perez premiere during the 77th Cannes Film Festival (Doug Peters/PA)

Gascon stayed with the black gown theme but went for one with a long sleeve and sweetheart neckline.

The film also stars Venezuelan actor Edgar Ramirez, who wore a white tuxedo jacket for the premiere.

Hollywood stars James Franco, Salma Hayek and Eva Longoria as well as model Alexa Chung and Saturdays singer Rochelle Humes were also among the stars in attendance at the premiere.