Unifrance recently named Gilles Pélisson the new president of French film and TV. Pélisson is the first new president to be voted in since Unifrance expanded its original cinema remit to TV, following its merger with TV France International in 2021, and the first figure from the world of television to take on the role.
Upon assuming his new role, the executive will replace film critic and former French Cinematheque head Serge Toubiana, who held the role for three consecutive two-year terms, as well as Hervé Michel, who was vice-president of the body from 2021. Daniela Elstner remains in place Executive Director of the body, as does and Sarah Hemar as Director of Audiovisual.
Pelisson was elected by a 60-member executive committee, which includes representatives of major guilds and commissions. Pelisson is a veteran within France’s media and entertainment industry landscape but may not be as knowledgable about French films as his predecessor, Toubiana, who had led the French Cinematheque and Les Cahiers du Cinema prior to joining Unifrance. He confirmed his departure from his role as TF1 Group CEO earlier this year after his plan to merge the audiovisual group with rival broadcaster M6 fell through.
Other film and TV figures being considered included former National Cinema Centre (CNC) president Frédérique Bredin, former Arte vice-president Anne Durupty, and producer Marie Masmonteil, whose recent credits under the banner of her Paris-based company Elzévir Films include Before We Collapse and L’Horizon.