Don't miss




Somalia twin bombings kill 18 in Mogadishu

Read more


Arming the "good guys"?

Read more


Gun Control in the United States: Will the Florida shooting be the turning point?

Read more


Giving a voice to the homeless in France

Read more


'Never Again': The students pushing for US gun control

Read more

#TECH 24

A bright future for solar power

Read more


Winter in France's Burgundy vineyards

Read more


How French cyber police are patrolling the 'Dark Web'

Read more


Marseille mon amour: Mediterranean city celebrates love

Read more


Jacques Tati loses his pipe in advertising row

Video by Alexandra RENARD , Yuka ROYER

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2009-04-18

Posters have appeared in Paris showing iconic French comedian Jacques Tati "sans pipe" - because of a ban on tobacco advertising. The pipe has been replaced with a yellow toy windmill which many see as an overdose of political correctness.

New posters showing iconic French comedian Jacques Tati have caused a stink – because his trademark pipe has been replaced by a yellow toy windmill.

In the original picture, the actor and director of comedy classics such as Mon Oncle and Jour de Fetes is riding a bicycle with his pipe firmly clamped between his teeth. Tati starred in his own films as Monsieur Hulot, a quixotic character confronting societal changes in postwar France. Mon Oncle was an instant international hit when it was released, and won the 1958 Oscar for Best Foreign Language film.

But new posters for a recent Jacques Tati retrospective show the iconic Hulot without his pipe after the Paris public transport network (RATP) banned the picture, citing a 1991 law that prohibits advertising tobacco.

“The law is the law,” said an RATP spokesman.
Organisers of the Tati film festival though are furious. “We cannot accept this kind of censorship in France,” said Costa Gravras, president of the Cinematheque Francaise. “It's his trademark and part of the character.”

Anti-smoking campaigners however said they understood why the change was necessary. “The photo itself would pose no problem if it were displayed at an exhibition,” said Gerard Audureau, a representative of a French association for non-smokers’ rights. “But, when a large number of giant posters are printed and put up in metro stations, then we should ask ourselves if they're not serving as publicity for cigarettes and for smoking.”


Date created : 2009-04-18