Paris (AFP)

After the statements of Adele Haenel and the new accusation against Roman Polanski, the Minister of Culture announced Thursday measures to fight against sexual harassment in French cinema, so that the speeches "are not in vain".

A work, "however great it is, does not excuse the possible mistakes of its author", launched Franck Riester during the second Assises for the parity, the equality and the diversity in the cinema, in Paris, at the moment Roman Polanski faces a new charge of rape from the French photographer Valentine Monnier, who says he was beaten and raped by the filmmaker in 1975 at the age of eighteen.

Without ever naming the director, the minister said that "talent is not a mitigating circumstance, genius, not a guarantee of impunity".

Two years after the birth of #MeToo, however, he warned against the "court of opinion" and assured of his concern to protect "the freedom to create".

Made public in Paris a few days before Wednesday's release of Polanski's new film, "J'accuse", the accusations of Valentine Monnier were added to other challenges, in recent years, all prescribed and refuted by director. Roman Polanski has also been on trial in the United States since 1977 for illegal sex with a minor.

Franck Riester, who had already praised the "courage" of the actress Adèle Haenel, who accused the director Christophe Ruggia of "touching" and "harassment" when she was a teenager, once again expressed her support for "all those who dare to break the silence ".

"Your word is necessary" and is "not futile", he said, by announcing measures against sexual harassment.

- Referents and alert cell -

Among these measures, the payment of all the grants from the National Film Center (CNC) will "henceforth be conditional on companies requesting them complying with specific obligations regarding the prevention and detection of risks related to sexual harassment". .

The minister is also "in favor of the appointment of referents for the prevention and detection of risks related to sexual harassment" on the shoots and during the promotions of the films.

Training on the prevention of harassment for professionals will also be organized as early as 2020.

Finally, the establishment of an "alert and listening cell for victims of violence and sexual and gender-based harassment" in live performance, audiovisual and cinema will be accompanied by the Ministry, so that 'it' is operational from 1 January 2020 ".

In this troubled context, the president of France Télévisions, Delphine Ernotte, also announced that the public audiovisual group would appoint "a referent sexual harassment on each shoot".

While Valentine Monnier had written letters to question the public funding enjoyed by Roman Polanski, Delphine Ernotte also justified the choice of France Televisions to co-produce "J'accuse".

"We considered that there was no great film on the Dreyfus Affair," she pleaded, however, saying "understand the emotion and questioning that may cause this decision."

"But beyond this symptom that represents a particular filmmaker or film that we should judge, it is a system that we must question," she said.

During the first edition of the Assises pour la parité last year, the then Minister of Culture Françoise Nyssen announced the establishment in 2019 of a bonus of 15% in grants for films whose teams include as many women as men in key management positions.

Taking stock of these measures, Franck Riester announced that 22% of films approved by the CNC (29 films) received this bonus. He welcomed the fact that the commitments made were "followed by results".

© 2019 AFP