French actor Gerard Depardieu faces new sex assault complaint

French actor Gerard Depardieu faces new sex assault complaint

/ 02:22 PM February 17, 2024

Gerard Depardieu

French actor Gerard Depardieu arrives for the screening of the restored version of the movie “Novecento – Atto Primo” by Bernardo Bertolucci, presented as part of Venice Classics selection at the 74th Venice Film Festival on Sept. 5, 2017, at Venice Lido. French actor Gerard Depardieu, who is already the subject of a judicial investigation for rape, is the subject of a new investigation for sexual assault during filming in 2014 following a complaint lodged in January by a former assistant, the Paris public prosecutor’s office said on Feb. 16, 2024, confirming a report in French newspaper Le Courrier de l’Ouest. TIZIANA FABI / AFP

RENNES, France—A woman has accused French screen legend Gerard Depardieu of sexually assaulting her during a 2014 film shoot, the Paris prosecutor’s office said on Friday, Feb. 16.

Depardieu, 75, has been charged with rape in another case and has been accused of sexual harassment and assault by more than a dozen women. He denies the allegations.


The woman registered a complaint on Jan. 9 accusing Depardieu of “sexual assault on a vulnerable person by someone abusing the authority of their function,” according to the document seen by AFP late on Thursday.


She told regional newspaper Le Courrier de l’Ouest that he groped her “all over” and made “inappropriate” remarks while she was a 24-year-old assistant on the set of 2015 film “Le magician et le Siamois” (“The Magician and the Siamese”) in western France.

The Paris prosecutor’s office confirmed there had been a complaint, and said it would be examined.

The statute of limitations for an alleged sexual assault on an adult in France is six years.

The actor’s lawyer, Christian Saint-Palais, said he had learnt about the complaint in the press and would not comment on it.

But “Depardieu firmly rejects all accusations against him,” he said.

READ: Gerard Depardieu accused of rape by Spanish journalist


Depardieu was in 2020 charged with rape and sexual assault after actress Charlotte Arnould filed her own complaint over allegations dating to 2018.

Another sexual assault complaint filed last year by actor Helene Darras, who said Depardieu groped and propositioned her during a 2007 film shoot, has been dropped for being past the statute of limitations.

Spanish journalist and author Ruth Baza said that she had filed a criminal complaint in Spain against Depardieu last month, claiming he raped her in 1995 in Paris.

The complaint has little hope of leading to charges due to the statute of limitations in France, which is 20 years for the alleged rape of an adult.

But Baza said she decided to go ahead anyway in the hope that it would “help other people” to do the same.

Lawyer Saint-Palais said Depardieu had not received any call to defend himself against those allegations.

Repeated allegations against Depardieu have become a culture-war frontline in France, dividing the world of cinema and pitting feminist groups against the actor’s defenders—including President Emmanuel Macron.

The French leader in December said Depardieu should enjoy the presumption of innocence, calling him an “immense actor” and insinuating he was the victim of a “man hunt.”

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But, more recently, Macron added that he had not “said enough how important the words are of women who are victims of this violence.”

TAGS: Film, France, Gerard Depardieu, sex assault

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