“The integration of screens does not pose a threat to cinema”

The President of the National Center for Cinematography and Motion Picture (CNC) breaks his silence on the occasion of the opening of this Tuesday, May 17th.And Cannes Film Festival. He believes that changes in viewership usage have increased during the pandemic with competition from platforms. laments Extremely fast movie turnover in theaters She believes that exhibitors should adhere to a variety of programmes.

On April 25, the Public Prosecution Office of Nanterre requested that you be referred to the criminal court on charges of sexual assault on your Judson. Despite this legal case that has been going on since 2020 and since your term ends on July 23, why did you decide to continue chairing the CNC Commission?

The only theme is the continuity and efficiency of the service provided by CNC. However, over the past 15 months, I think the competence has been there: the professionals themselves are saying that. As for the rest, it is a personal matter and I want to reaffirm my complete innocence and confidence in justice.

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What is the assessment of the sector after more than two years of the pandemic? Has the assistance made it possible to withstand the shock?

Everything could have collapsed. We haven’t seen such a crisis since World War II. The double challenge was to support our industry, which is 1% of France’s GDP, with all those who work there, especially artists, and to protect our ability to create our cultural sovereignty. That is why, together with comprehensive government measures, CNC has created a sector-specific aid for cinemas worth €310 million to mitigate the emergency and organize recovery, tailored and calibrated as much as possible to meet the needs of the sector thanks to its proximity. For example, we are the only country in the world where filming could have started again in May 2020, faster and better than anywhere else, thanks to an innovative insurance system funded by the state and private insurance companies. No bankruptcy was denied. Look at the number of French films selected at Cannes this year: 46 all sections combined!

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But at the same time, we have made fundamental reforms necessary to advance our model and secure its long-term future. The platforms now have investment commitments in French cinema and audiovisual, such as TV channels. It is a historic success and the result is unique in the world!

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