Dominique Boutonnat, Head Of France’s National Cinema Center, Indicted For Sexual Assault & Attempted Rape

Dominique Boutonnat
Dominique Boutonnat AP Photos

UPDATE, 02/11, 06:27AM: Dominique Boutonnat, president of France’s CNC (National Cinema Center), has been indicted on charges of sexual assault and attempted rape made by his godson, the public prosecutor’s office in Parisian suburb Nanterre said today.

The news, reported by BFM TV, is an escalation on yesterday’s story that Boutonnat was being questioned by police in relation to the allegations that were made in October.

His accuser’s lawyer told AFP that the indictment was a necessary step in establishing the truth as well as protecting her 22-year-old client. Boutonnat’s lawyer criticized the move, saying it was a hasty decision and that the facts were “disputed”. Boutonnat, via his lawyers, yesterday denied the allegations.

PREVIOUSLY, 02/10: The president of major French film org CNC (National Cinema Center), Dominique Boutonnat, is being held in police custody after accusations of sexual assault and attempted rape.

The French news channel BFM TV and AFP are reporting that the allegation stems from Boutonnat’s 22-year-old godson. The latter filed a complaint on October 7 alleging the incident took place in August 2020 while on vacation in Greece

Boutonnat’s lawyer Emmanuel Marsigny told AFP that the exec, 51, is denying the accusations: “Dominique Boutonnat denies having committed any offense whatsoever, he is completely serene about the outcome of this procedure.”

Boutonnat has been presiding over the CNC since July 2019. He comes from a financing background and is close to president Emmanuel Macron, as well as being a noted donor to his presidential campaign.

His appointment was opposed vigorously by French industry, with a group of prominent directors including Jacques Audiard, Nicole Garcia and Michel Hazanavicius penning a letter in opposition. Their reasons included Boutonnat’s composing of a report that suggested the French industry, long the beneficiary of strong public support, should rely more heavily on private investment moving forward.

During his tenure, the CNC has worked to establish guidelines to battle sexual misconduct in the French film industry.

Deadline has contacted the CNC for comment.

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