The Académie des César inaugurates its new model

The day of her election at the head of the Academy of Arts and Techniques of Cinema, in September, she had promised to invent “A new model”. Véronique Cayla, assisted by her vice-president, director Eric Toledano, laid the very first stone on Tuesday, November 10.

Véronique Cayla and Éric Toledano, a tandem to pacify the Caesars

In order to definitively establish parity and ensure democratic functioning, the General Assembly of the Association for the Promotion of Cinema (APC), which manages the Academy, will now be composed of only 164 members, including 82 men and women. 82 women, all elected by the 4,313 members of the institution, from different film professions. The Board of Directors will be made up of 21 joint pairs, one per professional branch, including Cédric Klapisch and Pascale Ferran for the production or Marina Foïs and Antoine Reinhartz for the interpretation.

The end of “de jure” members

The Academy of Caesar seems to definitely want to turn the page on the inter-self, since the modification of the statutes also and above all provides for the exclusion of so-called “de jure” members. Until then, personalities with notable status, such as those who received an Oscar or former presidents of the Academy, could sit on the Board of Directors of the APC on simple written request.

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Among the 18 “historic” members included the producer Thomas Langman, convicted in 2019 for harassment against his wife, and the director Roman Polanski, accused of rape, who crystallized most of the criticism. The decision being applicable immediately, the personalities concerned are summoned to abandon their functions. The members of the APC, gathered for the occasion, adopted these new statutes with an overwhelming majority of 134 votes out of 164 voters.

The need to calm the climate

Beyond the concrete and immediate change it brings, this vote therefore has a highly symbolic significance. In February, the announcement of the prize for best director, awarded to Roman Polanski, had upset the world of cinema already shaken by a deep crisis. For several weeks, the Academy had become the target of criticism, especially in a column signed by nearly 400 personalities in The world, who accused him of opaque functioning and had led to the collective resignation of the members of the Board of Directors and their president Alain Terzian, on the eve of the ceremony.

After a long period of consultation which mobilized the National Cinema Center, appointed as mediator, and the various members of the Academy, it was the Cayla-Tolédano pair that was elected in September to succeed the president by interim Margaret Menegoz. In July, the necessary renewal of the members of the association, which maintained the presence of “rights members” within the institution, had disappointed a large part of the world of cinema.

The Academy having now fulfilled its primary objective of a General Assembly “Totally democratic and equal”, the presidency must continue its delicate mission, which is in fact a huge project: calming the climate to build serenely the next Caesar ceremony, which must be “More agile, more flexible, more dynamic”, as Véronique Cayla had declared in September.


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