Sofiane Bennacer affair: Almond Trees has been deprogrammed from some cinemas, the distributor’s reaction – Actus Ciné

After the revelations of accusations of rape and violence against the actor Sofiane Bennacer (Les Amandiers), cinemas chose to deprogram or supervise screenings. Distributor Ad Vitam sent a letter to operators.

A few days after the revelations of Le Parisien and Liberation about Sofiane Bennacer, who was accused of rape and violence, were published, reactions are mounting.

Actor Sofiane Bennacer (Les Amandiers) was charged with rape and violence

One of the two producers of the film Les Amandiers by Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, Patrick Sobelman (Agat Films), assured on Friday at the microphone of France Inter, then in a press release broadcast this weekend (found in full below), that The production was unaware of these accusations before hiring Sofiane Bennacer.

The production explained that they first became aware of the rumors, then, two days after filming began, of the accusations, but “already [Sofiane Bennacer] was never heard of and that no investigation was opened“. And to add: “Then we inform the director. Highlighting the presumption of innocence, it does not plan to continue the film without this actor“.

Several theaters then announced their decision to deprogram the film, or to hold screenings. La Roche sur Yon-based Concorde simply canceled the film, while L’Ecran de St Denis temporarily stopped its exploitation to organize an oversight of the screenings.

The L’Ecran de Saint Denis cinema team detailed its position: “In consultation with the president of the association, we decided to temporarily remove the film from our programming. This is not a call for film censorship, we do not subscribe to this idea, but to temporarily: We do not see the programming of a cinema and a film as a fortuitous act, but a choice of cultural activities within framework of a public. service mission.

However, this choice cannot be made of all the elements necessary to side with the distribution of Les Amandiers, or how to contextualize it. Especially since, in our work, we try to offer films as a topic for reflection and debate, and especially on women’s rights issues..”

This is not a call for film censorship, we do not subscribe to this idea, but to temporarily

And add:Whether we like it or not, Les Amandiers goes beyond simple exploitation to become an object of debate, at the crossroads of several questions: the inability of the world of cinema to ensure that potentially toxic situations are neutralized , but also about the role of a room to be an agora and not just a simple place of diffusion, which would be an “artistic” neutrality with respect to the debates that have shaken our society. Cinemas should also be “Safe Spaces” where people are informed what they can watch and in what context, including potentially controversial films, and where their sensitivities are respected..”

Film distributor Ad Vitam took the initiative to send a letter to cinema operators. “We know very well that the film is suffering now following the articles that appeared in the press in the last few days. (…) We imagine that you will probably face some questions and reactions from your audience. Of course, you can surround the distribution of the film with any precautions that seem appropriate to you (public discussion, indication of ongoing investigation, etc.).

Les Amandiers is a collective work. (…) It seems normal to us that this film can continue its life in theaters. But know that in the face of this situation, we understand and respect all the positions and decisions you make regarding the exploitation of the film in your room. This decision is up to each of you.Find the full press release on the Boxofficepro website.

Several newspapers have followed up on the case in recent days, including Le Monde, Télérama and Liberation. Liberation looks at the question of the presumption of innocence urged by Valeria Bruni Tedeschi.

Sofiane Bennacer is accused of rape and violence: Valeria Bruni Tedeschi speaks

Liberation asked a lawyer to determine whether a film production can terminate an actor’s contract based on a complaint. “Dismissal for cause is serious and possible.And add:Concealing the existence of a rape complaint by a candidate is a breach of the duty of honesty and good faith. In a context of less social acceptance of sexual violence, it is also likely to harm the employer who may be suspected of indifference to this topic.

Journalist Marine Turchi, who specializes in tracking cases of sexual violence for Mediapart, also gave an update on the notion of “be considered innocent“.”This fundamental judicial principle does not, however, prevent speech, freedom of expression, or the implementation of precautionary measures.“, indicates Mediapart.

For the record, actor Sofiane Bennacer, currently playing Almond Trees by Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, has been charged. This indictment for rape and violence against several ex-boyfriends began last October. This was confirmed by the Mulhouse prosecution, to BFMTV.

He was placed under judicial supervision, with a travel ban to Strasbourg, Mulhouse, as well as Île-de-France. Sofiane Bennacer rejected these accusations and filed a complaint against the four complainants for defamation, identify our colleagues, reporting information from the Mulhouse prosecutor’s office.

As the BFMTV site reminds us, “the case began in 2021, after a rape complaint was filed by one of his former associates. Since then, three other women have reported suffering rape or violence from the actor, bringing the number of complainants to four. Sofiane Bennacer was charged in the first three complaints, and placed under assisted witness status for the fourth“.

After the article in Le Parisien earlier this week, new testimonies accuse the actor Sofiane Bennacer of “sexual and physical violence“. Two new victims implicated him for “sexual and physical violence”. They decided not to file a complaint.

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