Ladies and gentlemen parliamentarians,

Mr Mayor, dear Philippe,

Mr. Chairman, dear Richard,

Ladies and gentlemen exhibitors,

Ladies and gentlemen distributors,

Ladies and gentlemen,

Dear friends,

 

What a pleasure to be here in Deauville, by your side!

A pleasure all the more so as French cinema is experiencing an exciting year.

First there are the entries, up 5% compared to the same period last year.

There was, before the summer, a list of Cannes films that do not forget, with Parasite, the most popular Palme in fifteen years, three French films and two French co-productions rewarded!

There have also been great French successes in terms of attendance: Les Invisibles and Le Chant du Loup, at the beginning of the year, What is this granny? and School Life, the last few weeks.

And there will be others, no doubt.

I am thinking of the film Les Misérables, which has just been selected to represent France at the Oscars.

It will be released in theatres in November, and I wish it every success.


Dear friends,

I deeply believe that the cinema holds a special place in our society.

Our venue network is the first in Europe. And cinema remains the most popular cultural outlet among the French - as you recalled, dear Richard.

This special place must be defended.

Reaffirm it.

Because the show you see in a dark room is unlike any other.

You feel infinitely small, facing the gigantic screen, facing the deafening sound.

We hear replicas that resonate in us; deaf noises that wake us up all at once; soundtracks that we hasten to listen to once the film is finished.

We have to support our theatres, too, for the tremendous diversity that is revealed there.

If France is a country of cinema, if it is the home of all filmmakers, if cinema in France is so rich and diverse, it is also thanks to you.

You, the exhibitors, who risk so much to bring to light fragile films, or reveal unknown directors.

You, distributors, who risk so much to acquire rights, and allow films to find their audience.

Your role is absolutely essential.

I appreciate the difficulties a number of you are facing.

I want to assure you that I am with you.

Cinemas are also at the heart of the life of our territories.

The rooms are particularly well distributed:

Half of the French have a cinema in their municipality.

Two-thirds of cinemas are located in municipalities with fewer than 20,000 inhabitants.

Last but not least, we must protect our rooms for the shared emotions they offer us.

In a room, we see together, we vibrate together, we live together. 

Yes: the cinema brings together. It brings together women and men who don’t know each other, who have nothing in common, but for 90 minutes – sometimes more, sometimes less – they are passionate, in unison, about a story that is not theirs. 

I believe deeply in the cinema.

I believe in you, and it’s because I believe in you that I stand by you.

To accompany you and help you transform.

The new president of the CNC, Dominique Boutonnat, presented to you earlier his action plan for exploitation. 

As he explained to you, on the conquest of young people, on the digitalization of cinemas: we will be at your side.

 

Dear friends,

It is because I believe in you that I am calling you today, at a crucial moment for film creation in France, to unity, solidarity and the “spirit of industry”.

It is in this spirit that public policy in favour of cinema was conceived from the outset.

It uses all the levers of public action to understand, in a global, coherent way, all the links in the chain: our authors, our producers, our directors, our actors, our technicians, our distributors, our broadcasters – whether they are cinemas, video publishers, television channels, both private and public, paid as free, internet service providers, fee-for-service platforms, or subscription.

All these links are interdependent.

Hence the spirit of industry that must bind you.

 

This spirit is at the heart of the audiovisual bill that I will present in Cabinet at the end of November.

The observation is shared: the 1986 law on freedom of audiovisual communication, and the accompanying regulatory framework, are no longer adapted.

In the last 30 years the sector has changed dramatically.

Our responsibility today is to reaffirm our cultural sovereignty in the digital age.

It is to integrate, in our virtuous system of financing creation, the actors who today escape any form of regulation.

It is to modernize our regulatory framework, while strengthening the pluralism and cultural diversity that it has enabled.

The answer must not be a simple “adaptation” to external constraints.

No, we must reinvent our model, at the service of a free and independent creation, both accessible and demanding.

This model reinvented, we will only build it in unity.

 

We will not build it by pitting broadcasters against the rest of the creative ecosystem.

That would make no sense.

The good financing of creation depends on the dynamism of the broadcasters.

Allowing chains to have additional resources is beneficial to creation, since their contribution to the financing of creation is based on their turnover.

In particular, with regard to the authorization of television advertising, I strongly believe that the proposed solution is favourable for the entire ecosystem.

First and foremost, because it makes viewers want to see movies. This will lead to audiences that have not necessarily been there up to now.

But in addition, because it is a source of revenue for the channels, and therefore in fine for the creation.

I can already hear what some people are going to say.

They’re going to say to me, “Yes, that’s fine on paper, but the reality is that the authorization could be distorted and only benefit those who don’t need it.”

We will make sure that is not the case.

Quotas will be set aside for art and essay films and European films. It is also a question of equity.

Today, platforms can freely advertise on television for works that are not released in theatres.

And besides, Netflix did not hesitate to do so to promote Bird Box with Sandra Bullock.

However, films that are released in theatres cannot have television advertising.

We need to address this competitive asymmetry.

The end of the forbidden days obeys the same principle of equity.

With the proliferation of screens, uses and platforms, we can all recognize that this rule is obsolete.

It no longer protects you.

Because if we want to defend cinema, really defend it, we have to defend its access, we have to defend its visibility.

It must be discovered and loved.

It must be defended everywhere, including on free channels.

You have to defend it all the time, not just four nights a week.

 

Of course, we will only achieve our objectives of defending creation by continuing to encourage «virtuous» actors.

It is not a question of being less vocal about the objectives of creative funding.

And it’s a good thing: it’s not our project!

First, this bill will provide for a reform of this affected tax system in order to make digital platforms more involved in financing creation.

I will be presenting the details of this reform at a press conference on Friday.

Second, I would like to announce today that there will be no cap on NCC taxes in the 2020 finance bill.

Moreover, and I want to be very clear on this point, the audiovisual law will not have the object or effect of lowering the financing obligations for the creation of “traditional” broadcasters.

What we want to do is allow broadcasters to better value their investment in creation, while protecting independent production.

 

Yes: we must reinforce the independent production model and support the structuring of the sector.

Dominique Boutonnat’s report, which was made public last spring, reminded us of this: it is the audacity of producers that makes the success in theatres and on screens, the diversity of our creation, and the influence of France.  

Then let’s give them the means to be bold!

This is the meaning of the announcements made by the President of the Republic in May, in favour of access to financing for cultural and creative industries.

A 225 million euro investment fund will be created at Bpifrance.

A portion will be devoted to audiovisual and film companies for equity investments.

In addition, the Institute for the Financing of Cinema and Cultural Industries (IFCIC) will strengthen its participatory loan interventions.

This is an unprecedented effort.

These new devices will be available very soon.

 

If this transformation of our model is to be done with traditional broadcasters, it must also be done with platforms.

We will incorporate them into our model.

Integrating does not mean opposing.

It means not giving up who we are, our values, our philosophy.

This means continuing to require those who distribute the works to fund those who create them.

It means encouraging virtuous actors, and benefiting those who are the best allies of creation.

It is on this model of virtue that the channel Canal+ was built, the leading funder of cinema in France.

And that is the model we must continue to defend.

 

Platforms provide a service that our fellow citizens appreciate.

And they offer our creators immense opportunities for creation and dissemination.

They are not a threat in themselves.

They represent one when they don’t play the game, when they violate the foundations of our copyright or the independence of our producers, for example.

This is the case, through the contractual conditions that they sometimes impose – I am thinking of transfers of property rights, or their relationship to the “final cut” of the author.

There will be provisions in the act to prevent that.

In addition, the act will impose the same obligations for creative funding as other broadcasters.

The platforms will also have to be agreed by the CSA, as will the other players.

In order to achieve these different objectives, the mechanism will be simple, ambitious, and will allow greater flexibility by leaving more room for agreements.

We must simplify the legal and regulatory base:

All players targeting the French market will be subject to investment obligations in creation.

There will be no merging of obligations. They will remain distinct between film and audiovisual.

Some of these will have to take the form of pre-financing, including on-demand audiovisual media services.

Pre-financing, as we all know, is essential for risk-taking and innovation.

The levels of obligations will be differentiated according to the nature of the programming.

Higher rates will be applied to services that exclusively or mainly broadcast works than to services that also broadcast streaming programs or information...

All actors, including SMAD, will also be required to invest in independent production.  

The principles of these obligations will be set out in the act and their criteria will be specified by order in council.

With regard to the «American model», the obligation of delegated production is a real revolution.

 

For more responsiveness to changes in the context, and more adaptation to the editorial specificities of each publisher:

The place of professional agreements will be strengthened, and they will have to involve the authors for the provisions that concern them.

The role of the CFS will be more important, especially with respect to AADM.

And the Ministry of Culture will intervene to establish regulatory “safety nets” to promote negotiations and ensure their balance.

The minimum basis for negotiations will be set so as to encourage stakeholders to favour the conclusion of an agreement rather than the application of the “by default” decree.

 

This reinvented model calls for a rethought regulation.

We need a regulator that can effectively handle the entire audiovisual ecosystem.

The APF and HADOPI jurisdictions and interlocutors have come closer together. We have to take all the consequences.

We will merge these two authorities into a single regulator: ARCOM – the regulatory authority for audiovisual and digital communication.

It will ensure the protection of copyright and the promotion of creative financing, cultural diversity and the dynamism of the audiovisual landscape.

In addition, we will give ARCOM stronger powers to combat piracy.

Piracy is a looting: it empties your cinemas. But the answer we give it is too partial.

Yesterday, we were looking at peer-to-peer downloading. Today, piracy is 80% through streaming or direct downloading.

We need to update.

We will focus our actions on pirate sites, while keeping the existing device against peer-to-peer download.

We will expand content recognition technologies.

We will create a new referral procedure for sports piracy.

We will prevent the resurgence of mirror sites.

And we will entrust to HADOPI a mission of characterization of pirate sites, by publishing «blacklists».

Advertisers, payment services and search engines will be able to cease all relations with them and dry up their resources.

 

Before I give you the floor, there is a calendar item.

The draft law will be made public at the time of its transmission to the CSA, HADOPI and ARCEP in the coming days;

On the evolution of relations between producers and broadcasters: this point is largely a matter of the decree. The law will limit itself to guaranteeing the essential principles and the overall architecture of the system. So we have time in the coming weeks to discuss the appropriate parameters.

We will not rush. Nevertheless, we have a responsibility to move quickly, because it is particularly urgent to apply the new rules once we have transposed the European directives.

The will of the Government is therefore that negotiations between producers and broadcasters begin quickly, so as to lead to the adoption of the law. I will be the guarantor of their balance, perhaps if necessary by appointing a mediator to accompany these negotiations.

On all these points, we will propose in the next few days a method and a work schedule.

 

Those are my commitments.

I need you to take some, too.

I need you to do more on programming commitments.

Because when a movie doesn’t stay on the screen long enough, it’s a double frustration.

It’s frustrating for the public, and it’s frustrating for the creators.

Dominique Boutonnat reminded us earlier that you are meeting the current programming commitments.

Obviously, I encourage you to continue. But I think we can do more.

Let us do more to negotiate future commitments.

And let’s do more – and faster – for the written contract between operators and distributors.

Finally, I need you to make commitments for gender equality. For parity. On your screens, and in your ranks.

We’re not there yet. But we’re on the right track.

After the Equality Conference last year, a lot has been done.

Until now, the requests came from the top; now, the initiatives come from the industry.

You have completely appropriated the subject. I want to thank you for that.

Work is underway on the equality charter in exploitation and distribution. I encourage you to sign it quickly.

I’m counting on you, and I’ll see you at the new Assisi.

It will be held in a few weeks, on the theme of inclusion.

 

Ladies and gentlemen,

Dear friends,

Unity.

That’s what I’m asking you.

It is on this condition that we will succeed.

This bill can strengthen the entire audiovisual ecosystem.

So let’s rise to the challenge.

Let us show the face of a united industry. United. United.

The future of our model is at stake.

It is also the future of our cinemas; the future of this “irreplaceable experience”, as you say so well, dear Richard.

It is our cultural sovereignty.