Sex Scandal Continues To Rock Quebec’s ‘Just For Laughs’ Festival

David Krayden | Ottawa Bureau Chief

Another actress is accusing Quebec theatrical producer Gilbert Rozon of sexual assault. Rozon, the founder — and until recently — president  of the internationally-renowned “Just for Laughs” festival has stepped down amid a growing sex scandal.

Ten women are now accusing Rozon of either sexually harassing or assaulting them, one of whom says she was 14 at the time of the alleged incident.

Rozon was also a judge on the French television show “France Has Incredible Talent” and was in charge of Montreal’s 375th anniversary celebrations this year.

Police have not charged Rozon with any crime and have not even confirmed that an official investigation is underway.

In the latest allegation, Patricia Tulasne told CBC News’s Quebec division, Radio-Canada, Thursday, that Rozon raped her in 1994 while the producer was in her apartment.

According to Tulasne, the ordeal began innocently enough, with the cast members of Le diner de cons all going out to dinner after the last performance of the play. Tulasne says Rozon offered her a ride home.

“At the time, we both lived in Outremont. So I accepted. We left in his convertible, and the car ride home was fine. There was nothing inappropriate. I didn’t feel in danger at all,” Tulasne told Radio-Canada.

After arriving at their destination, Tulasne says Rozon expressed a desire to stay for while but the actress says she discouraged Rozon by saying she was busy, had to walk her dog and was preparing to wake up early the next morning.

Tulasne says Rozon didn’t take the hint and joined her while she took her dog on a walk lasting over an hour. “He’ll get the point. He’ll leave,” is what Tulasne says she remembers thinking at the time.

But Rozon then allegedly got to his point.

“He pushed open the door, entered the apartment, and the first thing I remember is that he held me against the wall, kissed me and took off my dress,” according to Tulasne.

She says she decided to submit to the sexual assault because it was easier than fighting back.

“I should have pushed him off, but you have to put it all in context. I was very young, there was that employer-employee dynamic. He was a very powerful man, while I was just starting my career.”

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