On Friday, France’s César Awards returned to Paris’s L’Olympia stage to honor this year’s films and filmmakers. The ceremony has been a site of controversy before, and this year’s awards were no different, but while several recipients spoke out in favor of reopening theaters, only one performer came prepared for a protest with a costume change. According to Deadline, actress Corinne Masiero took the stage in a donkey costume covered in fake blood, before stripping down to a faux gore-soaked gown and, finally, fully undressing altogether, while presenter Marina Fois looked on in shock and (eventually) the audience applauded. You can see video of the demonstration below, posted by French channel Canal+ to Twitter; keep in mind that it is, of course, NSFW.
With the phrase “no culture, no future” written on her bare stomach and “Give us back art, Jean” on her back, Masiero was reportedly protesting Prime Minster Jean Castex and the French government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. “I have a last costume and after that, there’s nothing more,” Masiero said, according to Deadline. “This one is Who Wants the Skin of Roger L’Intermittant?”
The quote is reportedly an allusion to the French title of Who Framed Roger Rabbit? and a reference to the country’s intermittent entertainment workers, who have protested and occupied theaters in recent weeks in an attempt to demand the government set a reopen date for the arts. Per the New York Times, the country’s cultural institutions, including museums, music venues, and movie theaters closed in October in an attempt to control the country’s coronavirus cases.
Herself a César Award nominee for 2011’s Louise Wimmer, Masiero is known for TV series like Fait pas ci fait pas ça, Collection Fred Vargas, and Capitaine Marleau, on which she currently stars. Joked Masiero from the stage, “I don’t think I’ll be invited next year. We’ll see.”