Dominique Boutonnat, president of the National Center for Cinema and Animated Image (CNC), was taken into police custody this Wednesday morning on suspicion of sexual assault and attempted rape on his 22-year-old godchild. The information was confirmed by a police source to AFP. The man disputes these charges writes BFM TV, who adds that the facts would have taken place last summer during the holidays according to the complainant. The investigation was entrusted to the judicial police of Nanterre (Hauts-de-Seine).
This accusation is in contradiction with the efforts displayed by the boss of French cinema. In October, the CNC launched a training course to prevent sexual violence, intended for employers in the sector, in response to the #MeToo wave in French cinema.
The appointment of Dominique Boutonnat at the head of the CNC in July 2019 had been contested, but for quite other reasons. This close friend of Macron had raised serious concerns in the most creative part of the profession. He was known as the author of a report which recommended mobilizing new private investors in the financing of cinematographic creation, emphasizing profitability objectives and the emergence of “National champions”. Some saw it as a risk of liberalizing the cinema financing system, handed over to speculators.
Before this position, Dominique Boutonnat had particularly distinguished himself as a producer of films with minor notoriety (such as Money by Gela Babluani with Benoît Magimel in 2017) via the company Electrik Films, and as co-producer or associate producer of successful films such as Arnacœur, Polisse or Untouchables in which he has invested.