Famed French director Luc Besson, who directed Taken, The Fifth Element, and Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, has been accused by multiple women of sexual misconduct.
The accusations range from sexual harassment to rape. Belgian-Dutch actress Sand Van Roy first accused the director back in May. She accused him of drugging her then raping her during a meeting at the Le Bristol hotel in Paris. Van Roy allegedly was knocked unconscious via a drug in her tea. She eventually woke up during the sinister encounter she describes.
Besson vehemently denied the charges through his lawyer, Thierry Marembert, “Mr. Besson fell off his chair when he learned of these accusations, which he flatly denies.” The allegations made by Van Roy are being investigated by Paris police.
Besson was also accused of assaulting and sexually harassing a casting director in the 2000s in July.
A new report from French website Mediapart details accusations from a former assistant of Besson as well as two students at Besson’s former Cite du Cinema. There were also accusations made by a former employee of EuropaCorp, who described inappropriate behavior made by Besson. The two students at Besson’s film school accused him of harassment.
Besson’s former assistant, who remains anonymous, claims she was “blackmailed” into a sexual relationship with Besson. SHe would go on to detail three different sexual encounters as well as what she claims is harassment in the workplace. Not only did she make the accusations, but she also allegedly provided the paper with Besson’s agenda and a note that is supposedly from the director instructing her to take a bath and describing her as a “princess.”
Another accusation was made by theater producer Karine Isambert. She details that the director forcibly grabbed her while at a casting call in a hotel room in 1995. The report from Mediapart also indicates Besson used similar tactics to the accusations made against Harvey Weinstein in that he often requested to meet actresses in hotel rooms. They even claim to have a video of a 16-year old girl at a hotel room casting in 2003.
All in all, it seems that accusations are trickling in against the director, and more are likely to come out.
Luc Besson may not be as well known in the United States as Harvey Weinstein, but he is a celebrated director and writer whose credits many will recognize. He’s worked on the Taken franchise, The Transporter, La Femme Nikita, The Fifth Element, Colombiana, and Lucy. He’s currently working on sequels to both Colombiana and Lucy.