The French film industry's current financial crisis and its impact on creation: the example of Jacques Doillon's Raja (2003)
Source: Studies in European Cinema, Volume 2, Number 3, December 2005 , pp. 199-212(14)
Abstract:Although Jacques Doillon is amongst the major film-makers in France, his recent project found no financing in spite of its relative cheapness. According to Doillon, this was because his scenario did not fit within the light-entertainment focus of financiers. Indeed, funding films that do not conform to a Hollywood model has become a particularly fraught issue in France. Frustrated in his original ambition, Doillon then embarked on the filming of Raja in Marrakech (Morocco). This film depicts the unsuccessful love story between a blas, middle-aged Frenchman (Pascal Greggory) and Raja, one of his maids played by the newcomer Najat Benssallem. One of the first temptations is to read the film as a parable for the power relationship between rich industrialized countries in the North and emerging nations in the South. Our article however proposes a different interpretation of the narrative: in our view, the film can also be seen as an allegory for the conflict-ridden relationship between film-makers and their financiers in a world where return upon investment is the paramount criterion for the selection of scenarios.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: December 1, 2005
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