Power, prostitutes and alcohol-fuelled orgies: But will DSK sue for movie based on his disgrace?

  • Welcome To New York, starring Gerard Depardieu, premiered today
  • The sexually explicit film is based on the downfall of Mr Strauss-Khan
  • In 2011 he was accused of sexually assaulting chambermaid in New York
  • All charges dropped and he settled with woman on undisclosed terms
  • However film shows Depardieu's character raping maid in hotel room

By Chris Pleasance


No Cannes premiere is complete without A-list celebrities, red carpet receptions, and banks of paparazzi.

But the eagerly awaited Welcome To New York starring Gerard Depardieu managed to do without all that, attracting attention of its own thanks to its controversial sexual content.

Loosely based on the rise and fall of former French presidential hopeful Dominique Strauss-Khan, it was screened in the local Star Cinema, previously known for its pornographic offerings.

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A scene from the film Welcome to New York, which is loosely based on the rise and fall of former French presidential hopeful Dominique Strauss-Khan

A scene from the film Welcome to New York, which is loosely based on the rise and fall of former French presidential hopeful Dominique Strauss-Khan

Welcome to New York (pictured), a film based on the sex scandal that engulfed Dominique Strauss-Khan in 2011, has premiered at Cannes

Welcome to New York (pictured), a film based on the sex scandal that engulfed Dominique Strauss-Khan in 2011, has premiered at Cannes

In the film, which featured graphic sex scenes, Gerard Depardieu plays Mr Deveraux a power sex-addict on the road to ruin
Dominique Strauss-Kahn was arrested in 2011 just as he was preparing a bid to become the next French president

In the film Gerard Depardieu (left) plays Mr Deveraux a powerful sex-addict, thought to be based on Strauss-Khan (left) who was accused of sexually assaulting a chambermaid in a New York hotel

Depardieu plays sex-addict Mr Deveraux, a character said to be based on former head of the IMF Mr Khan.

The French statesman was arrested in 2011 just as he was preparing a bid to become the next French president, accused by Nafissatou Diallo, a New York chamber maid, of trying to rape her.

Lawyers for Mr Strauss-Kahn proved that a sex act which took place was consensual, but he was forced to step down from his $500,000 a-year job at the International Monetary Fund.

Diallo then sued Mr Strauss-Kahn, but the two sides reached a financial settlement late last year, the details of which have never been disclosed.

 

In the film, Mr Deveraux is seen taking part in several alcohol-fulled orgies involving prostitutes in a New York hotel room while on a business trip, before raping a hotel chambermaid as she comes to clean the room the next day.

Deveraux is then arrested, given a full strip search captured in an unflinching single shot, before another harrowing flashback sequence shows him sexually assaulting a female journalist sent to interview him. 

In the explicit film, Mr Deveraux is shown raping a chambermaid, also in a New York hotel

In the explicit film, Mr Deveraux is shown raping a chambermaid, also in a New York hotel

The two-hour film, which also stars Nip/Tuck actress Jacqueline Bisset as the character Mr Deveraux’s wife, premiered at the festival on Saturday with a private showing.

The film will not be shown in French cinemas but will be released on video-on-demand websites. It will appear in cinemas in other countries however, including the UK, at a later date.

Before the screening Depardieu , director Abel Ferrara and Jacqueline Bisset, took to the stage of The Star cinema to introduce the film.

Depardieu said he 'disliked politicians' and was 'happy' to participate in the film, while Mr Ferrara said Depardieu had not only agreed to act in the film but also put up 'half the money'.

Since the premiere the film has received mixed reviews, with US actor Mickey Rourke saying it was Ferrara's best film in years.

Rourke also praised Depardieu as having 'more courage than any other living actor today', according to Yahoo, while French director Claude Lelouch also hailed his performance.

However, The Telegraph called the film 'superficial and pretentious', giving it just two stars out of five.

Before the screening Vincent Maraval, producer of the film, said the French elite tried to block the  there is an ‘incestuous relationship between the media and political elite’ in France.

He told the Independent: ‘No French TV station wanted to finance us.

‘Everyone warned us not to make this film, both our friends and our enemies.’



The comments below have been moderated in advance.

Why we glamorise bad behaviour is beyond me? The man has NO respect for women, or for himself - sorry, but I don't want to see this!

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I liked him as Obelix.

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They should have gotten Udo Kier to play the role. I'm sorry to say that Depardieu is past it.

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anyone who says they would not do the same is a liar!

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Looks like the guy had his priorities right ...

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What a Lad !!!!

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Who cares?

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no thanks

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Sounds like a loser, just like DSK.

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It takes guts to make a movie like this where the IMF and politicians are exposed. Gerard Depardieu knows the media is an arm of the political elite yet he took a chance. He's a great actor and he's fearless.

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