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Sexual harassment and assault

Director Luc Besson hit with a new accusation of sexual assault

A casting director tells a French magazine that Besson sought sexual favours ‘every time I took the lift with him’

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 12 July, 2018, 5:38am
UPDATED : Thursday, 12 July, 2018, 8:06pm

Director Luc Besson has once again been accused of sexual assault and workplace abuse.

The new accusations are the result of an investigative report by the French magazine Mediapart .

Mediapart’s article comes two months after actress Sand Van Roy accused the French filmmaker of rape, which he denies.

Besson’s lawyer also disputes the Mediapart report, which includes new assertions made by an unnamed casting director as well as an interview with Roy.

The 49-year-old casting director told Mediapart on Monday that she was assaulted by the director “every time I took the lift with him”, and that he also demanded sexual favours from her on set.

Two other women also said that Besson “behaved inappropriately” with them, with one actress claiming she had to escape from a casting in his Paris office on her hands and knees.

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According to the news site, the casting director who worked with Besson wrote to France’s public prosecutor saying she was “both a witness and a victim”, to Besson’s sexual misconduct on set in 2004.

The casting director said that Besson, 59, frequently forced himself upon her by groping her breasts, requesting fellatio and attempting to thrust his tongue down her throat.

The director’s lawyer Thierry Marembert has already denounced the rape allegation as “fantasist accusations”.

His office said on Tuesday that he had nothing to add to his statement to Mediapart that Besson “categorically denies any type of inappropriate or reprehensible behaviour.

“Mr Besson is reserving his answers for the investigators so that his innocence can be shown.”

A spokesman for EuropaCorp, Besson’s production company, told Deadline.com that it had no comment beyond expressing “its support and confidence in Luc Besson”.

Roy, 27, is one of the stars of Besson’s current project Taxi 5.

The actress reportedly told Mediapart she had a two-year relationship with Besson in which she lived in “a state of confusion” before reportedly being assaulted at the Bristol Hotel in Paris in May.

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“I said to him what he wanted to hear, out of fear of reprisals,” she reportedly said of her interactions with Besson, whose credits include The Fifth Element and La Femme Nikita.

Roy has now had two meetings with investigators, according to Mediapart.

Prosecutors are also reportedly deciding on whether they will have a meeting with the casting director.