Francis is a housecat and the main protagonist of Felidae in both the books and movies.
Francis is a mostly black furred cat, with white socks. The tip of his tail is also white. He has a pink nose, green eyes, and appears to be a Tuxedo Cat.
Francis is cool headed and very perceptive. A bit stereotypical, he is a curious cat as well as being very intelligent. There is some humor to his character.
According to a Flashback in Schandtat, Felidae was born to a pair of unnamed stray cats. His mother had a hard time feeding herself and in turn, her litter, which resulted in her stealing from humans. His father wasn't around, as is typical for male cats regarding their offspring. His mother eventually pays for straying so close to humans and nearly loses her entire litter. She also loses her own life.
Francis is the only kitten to survive. Sometime afterwards, he is found and adopted by Gustav Löbel and lives out the rest of his days as a domestic cat.
The MovieEditFrancis lives with a man named Gustav Löbel, an architect and erotic novelist who moves around a lot. The latest place they move too is surrounded in violence and mystery, as Francis discovers when he and Bluebeard discovered the body of a murdered cat named Sascha. Both cats discuss the death, with Bluebeard guessing it was a cruel man who killed him with a can opener. Francis disagrees, saying that the throat was shredded and likely the work of another cat. Later that night, Francis has a nightmare about a scientist tricking him into imprisonment by offering him a fancy collar. He awakens to Bluebeard coming into the house. The other cat informs him that there's been another killing, after he asks. Deep Purple was the latest victim, a tomcat. The two cats go to see the corpse, meeting Kong and the two Hermanns on the way. When they reach the body, Francis notices that Purple and Sacha's deaths both have something in common-- they were both sexually excited when they were murdered. Bluebeard stubborn maintains it was a can opener, but Francis tells him not to obtuse and theorizes someone doesn't want competition from other males or just hates sex in general. Later, back at home, he hears the sounds of cats shrieking in pain and finds the Cult of Claudandus when he follows it. There he sees several strays, including Bluebeard, Kong, Hermann and Hermann. He spies on them, until they notice him, then he is forced to run for his life. Francis runs a fair distance from home, losing them, and finding a temporary haven in the house of a blind white cat called Felicity, when he falls through a skylight. They talk a bit, the white cat telling Francis she's been blind from birth, but he insists that a human might've ruined her sight at a young age. They change the subject and Francis is excited to learn that Felicity, in hearing the death cries of other cats, is the first witness to some of the murders. They begin to discuss it, but just as Felicity begins speaking of Claudandus, Bluebeard finds them both. The two eat some food, then continue to investigate. They go to the house of an old cat named Pascal. He greets them, offers them food, and takes Francis to his computer while Bluebeard goes to eat. The two talk about the murders, noticing all the dead cats were European Shorthairs. Francis sees this as an act of racism, but then Pascal enters the sixth, newest murder: Felicity. Alarmed and in disbelief, Francis goes back to check on her, only to find she had been murdered, her head ripped clean off. He then concludes that she died because she knew too much and that the killer was watching his every move. Later he has another nightmare, surrounded by dead cats. A man rises up from the pile and begins puppeteering the corpses around, repeating Pascal's words of "no other creation is as worthy as the felidae" and telling Francis the very word "felidae" is his next clue. Francis awakens and begins to chase mice. In the chase, he accidentally starts up a VCR which shows animal experiments on cats. They test a substance that is supposed to mend skin back together, but it kills every test subject they have except an orange stray that wanders in off the streets. Making him their mascot, they finally find success when the serum is tested on him. They name the cat "Claudandus" and later dissect him when they suspect he is a mutant and that allowed him to survive while the others died. As funding is cut further and further the lead scientist goes madder and madder, deciding to breed his mutant cat and produce a "super race" of cats. Drunk and believing the cat has spoken to him, he releases Claudandus and the two battle. The victor is uncertain as the tape ends and Kong appears, making good on his promise of meeting Francis "in the near-distant future". Admitting that he is the killer (of which Francis is skeptical) Kong attacks Francis while Hermann and Hermann look on. When Francis runs, they chase, but Francis manages to escape one again. Whilsts running, he stumbles upon a sixth murder victim, a pregnant female who's cat her throat slit and her belly ripped open, her unborn kittens spilled into the grass. Kong eventually catches up to him, when he too stumbles upon the body. He recognizes the body as one of his mates, a queen named Solitare, and he grieves angrily over her, swearing death to the one who murdered her. Losing interest in Francis, Kong tries to find his mate's murderer. An old, bedraggled grey cat appears from the bushes and then flees. The four cats, decide to go after him. Francis follows him into an underground pipe and Bluebeard appears shortly afterwards, having also seen Solitare and heard Kong's wailing. The two make their way into the Catacombs, where they find Isaiah, who tells them the tale of the Prophet, Claudandus. He tells Francis that the Lord made him the "Lord of the Dead", tasking him with gathering the dead. He reveals to Francis that many of the dead were mutilated, sexually excited, or even pregnant. Bluebeard and Francis discuss it further, but Bluebeard can think of nothing but food, so Francis goes home to sleep and dream some more. In his dreams, he sees several cats, and dreams of the Prophet. They encourage him to go with him, to their land, and when he asks what will he find in that land, they respond "everything that we have lost." He is pulled from his dream by a female cat in heat called Nhozemphtekh. She seduces him, they mate, and then Francis asks who she is and where she comes from. She isn't interested in these questions, however, and just wants to get back to mating.
Later, Bluebeard comes to tell Francis of Joker's activities. He wants to bring Pascal into it too. Bluebeard tells Francis that the breed of female that he mated with a are different; a designer breed different from them and dangerous. He again goes to Pascal and both of them agree that the killer is sending a message instead of making mistakes. Both agree that Joker is the most likely culprit, but Bluebeard informs them he's disappeared. Pascal says he's run away; Francis says he's dead.They gather together a group of strays, telling them that the actual number of murders is well over 400 instead of a mere 7. Francis tells them that Joker is responsible somehow and learns from his granddaughter that Claudandus is alive. Pascal disagree, however, claiming that no cat could've survived such terrible wounds and convinces everyone but Francis that he is dead.
Francis and Bluebeard again go investigating and find out that Joker was killed, willingly. Whilst looking an old Egyptian book, Francis realizes that the cat he mated with might be an old breed dating back to the ancient days of Egypt, genetically or phonetically. He puts the pieces together, figuring Claudandus didn't want them breeding with Nhozemphtekh, "poisoning" the breed. Further linking things together, he concludes that Pascal is heavily involved and may be the culprit, if not Joker.Francis gets on Pascal's computer, logs into his databases, and learns that Pascal is Claudandus. The cat in question then appear, after nearly killing Bluebeard, and explains that he killed Preterius and learned genetics after Ziebold took him in. Afterwards, he tries to recreate the Felidae, and kills any males who go after Nhozemphtekh, since they aren't racially suitable. Disgusted, Francis tries to delete the Data, but Claudandus fights him. The two toms battle fiercely, with Francis winning by slicing Claudandus open from chest to belly. During the fight, they break the computer, which catches the entire house on fire.
Francis survives, however, recover, and Francis goes on to live life with a Felidae lady.
In the book series, Francis solves several more murders and other counts of bloody injustice. He finds alliance in other characters such as Hector, Ambrosius, or Adrian, however not all of them are as loyal as they seem. He also discovers one of his encounters with female cats has produced a son, who looks and behaves almost exactly like him. Guilty and sad to hear of the death of his mother, he allows his son to tag along with him in his investigations.
- Ulrich Tukur voices Francis.