In its first official comment since stories began appearing about a racy one-sheet featuring The Artist star Jean Dujardin holding a woman by the ankles to promote the comedy Les Infideles, Wild Bunch confirms it has removed the posters and said the billboard posting agency hired by distributor Mars Films dropped the ball by not getting approvals from ARPP, the regulation council. The Wild Bunch veep of international distribution in charge of Les Infideles, Carole Baraton, said that the movie has been well reviewed and described the film as “charged with fierce humor against male unfaithfulness.”
It’s certainly bad timing those unapproved posters were hung during the Oscar balloting period, and yeah, some of the images are pretty tacky. But press reports inferring this could hurt Dujardin’s chances for a Best Actor Oscar (he won the SAG Award) seem preposterous. The poster was meant to be a spoof of the James Bond film For Your Eyes Only, and it is reminiscent of spoofs like the Naked Gun films. Dujardin made the film with his wife, Alexandra Lamy, and made his name in France doing spoof comedies like the OSS 117 films. Trying to turn this into a scandal seems a real stretch.