[FR] Signing of agreement between cinema organisations and Canal+ paves the way for new media chronology

IRIS 2019-1:1/16

Amélie Blocman


Discussions have been ongoing for the past few months between French television Canal+ and the country’s film-industry professional organisations regarding the channel’s future investment in French films. Canal+, the leading player in financing for French cinema (EUR 160 million 2017), has the benefit of exclusive “exploitation windows” in respect of the works that it pre-finances. After talks broke down a few weeks ago, an agreement hailed by the Ministry of Culture as “very positive for the entire branch” was finally reached on 6 November 2018. The provisions of the agreement include the renewal of the channel’s undertakings regarding the French cinema sector for a four-year period (i.e. until 31 December 2022) and the continuance of the channel’s generalist model focused on cinema and sport. The agreement paves the way for the signing of a new agreement on media chronology which will afford the public speedier access to works on both television and the other platforms. “This is a major agreement that provides support for [the] creation [of new works]. It will make it possible to harness the vitality and diversity of our country’s cinema,” explained Frédérique Bredin, General Manager of France’s Centre National de Cinématographie et l’Image Animée (Centre for the Cinema and Animation).

At the same time, the Canal+ and TF1 groups brought an end to a conflict that had resulted in Canal+ depriving some of its subscribers of the TF1 channel early in the year. The groups announced that they had signed a broadcasting agreement allowing channels such as TF1, TMC, TFX and LCI to be made available on all the channels broadcast by Canal+. The agreement consolidates the partnership between the two groups by enabling the offer of enriched services to all subscribers to Canal+ packages. It also heralds a new, broader partnership between TF1 and Dailymotion, which - like Canal+ - belongs to the Vivendi group. TF1, wishing to realise a financial advantage from the broadcasting of its channels by third parties, had already managed to reach an agreement with the four telecom groups in France (Bouygues Telecom, Free, Altice-SFR and Orange), but not with Canal+. France’s audiovisual regulatory authority, the Conseil Supérieur de l’Audiovisuel (CSA), and the Government became more insistent and a few days later Canal+ gradually restored the signal for TF1 in its offers and said that it was prepared to negotiate with TF1.


This article has been published in IRIS Legal Observations of the European Audiovisual Observatory.