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Updated February 25th, 2024 at 17:10 IST

Judith Godreche Calls Out Sexual Abuse In French Film Industry During Cesar Awards: Face The Truth

Judith Godreche was invited to speak on sexual violence at the ceremony after actors alleged that they were teenage victims of sexual abuse by older directors.

Judith Godreche
A file photo of Judith Godreche | Image:IMDb
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Judith Godreche, a French actor, called on France's film industry to “face the truth” on sexual violence and physical abuse during a live broadcast of the Cesar Awards ceremony.  A video from the award ceremony is going viral on the internet in which she can be heard saying, "We can decide that men accused of rape no longer rule the (French) cinema". France's Cesar Award is considered a version of the Academy Awards.

Judith Godreche calls out sexual abuse in France cinema

The actress was invited to speak on sexual violence at the ceremony on Friday after actors alleged that they were teenage victims of sexual abuse by directors decades older than themselves, shedding light on the repulsive underside of the country's industry. “Is it possible that we are able to face the truth? With the same moral strength that we use to be creative, let's have the courage to say out loud what we know quietly," Godreche said during an emotional speech. “The power seems to be swaying," she added. 

(A creengrab from the video | Image: X)

Her speech comes as French cinema is expected to shine next month at the Oscars ceremony with Justine Triet's courtroom drama Anatomy of a Fall.

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Judith Godreche accused directors, Benoit Jacquot and Jacques Doillon, of rape and sexual abuse

The 51-year-old actress recently accused two film directors of rape and sexual abuse when she was a teenager. She formally filed a complaint earlier this month, the Paris prosecutor said. She is accusing film director Benoit Jacquot, with whom she had a six-year relationship that started when she was 14, of rape and physical abuse. Jacquot, a prominent director in France, is 25 years her senior. 

(A file photo of the actress | Image: X)
(A file photo of the actress | Image: X)

She is also accusing another film director, Jacques Doillon, of sexual abuse while he was directing a film when she was 15. Doillon is 28 years older than her.

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Both Jacquot and Doillon have denied the allegations.

Speaking on France Inter radio earlier this month, Godreche said that she was never attracted to Jacquot, “but I ended up with him, in his bed, and I was his child wife.” For the unversed, Godreche and Jacquot met in 1986 on the set of his film The Beggars. “I was indoctrinated, it was as if I'd joined a cult,” she said. The relationship was marred by violence, confinement and control, she said.

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Published February 25th, 2024 at 15:48 IST

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