Gérard Depardieu will take to the stage alongside Carla Bruniat a music festival celebrating the end of France’s Coronavirus lockdown despite being investigated for rape, MailOnline can reveal.
The pair are topping the bill in a series of celebrity singalongs to be held next month in the ornate grounds of the Palace of Versailles, the former Royal estate west of Paris.
Depardieu, 72, will appear on stage while facing charges of raping and sexually abusing a young actress in the French capital.
Gérard Depardieu, pictured above, will take to the stage alongside Carla Bruni at a music festival celebrating the end of France’s Coronavirus lockdown despite being investigated for rape
Depardieu will take to the stage alongside Carla Bruni, pictured above
The pair are topping the bill in a series of celebrity singalongs to be held next month in the ornate grounds of the Palace of Versailles, pictured above
Depardieu intends to perform songs by the late French singer Barbara – herself a sex abuse victim whom the actor is said to have referred to in ‘disturbing text messages’ to the young woman he allegedly attacked.
Magistrates supported by judicial police have compiled further evidence which includes CCTV footage of Depardieu performing a sex act on his 22-year-old alleged victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons.
Depardieu, the star of box office smash hits such as Green Card and The Last Metro, faces trial and prison for at least two alleged rapes carried out at his £45million Paris mansion in 2018.
In turn, the actor has insisted ‘I am innocent’, adding: ‘I can only reject all the accusations as clearly as possible, as I’ve already done in front of the investigators.’
Organisers of the King’s Vegetable Garden concerts – named after a green space just behind the Versailles palace – confirmed that Depardieu would be performing on July 1, despite being an indicted criminal suspect.
Depardieu, pictured, intends to perform songs by the late French singer Barbara – herself a sex abuse victim whom the actor is said to have referred to in ‘disturbing text messages’ to the young woman he allegedly attacked
He will sing covers of songs by the late singer Barbara – the stage name of Monique Serf, who spoke about being sexually abused by her father when she was 10.
Depardieu is said to have referred to such crimes in texts to his own alleged victim, according to prosecuting sources quoted widely in France.
Referring to the series of concerts taking place throughout July, an organiser said: ‘They will be big summer open air events as France comes out of the Coronavirus lockdown. Artists have been silent for too long.
‘Gérard Depardieu is an excellent singer who is one of the lead stars, along with Carla Bruni, who is a big supporter of Mr Depardieu’ the source added, while refusing to comment on Depardieu’s indictment.
Ms Bruni, the third wife of former French President Nicolas Sarkozy, will perform her own songs on the Versailles stage on July 3.
The 53-year-old former supermodel is a friend of Depardieu, and has never spoken out about the alleged rapes, or his past problems with the law, including a road-rage incident in which he punched a motorist, and a drink driving conviction.
Depardieu is one of a series of male celebrities placed under investigation for sex crimes following huge pressure from the #MeToo movement against sexual abuse.
But Ms Bruni – the former supermodel turned pop singer – has regularly played down the extent of such criminality.
She caused an outcry in 2017 when she said sexual abuse and harassment ‘doesn’t happen in fashion,’ because ‘there are a lot of women in fashion – women rarely go into that kind of abuse. That keeps it safe for young women.’
Since then, big names in the world of Paris fashion placed under formal investigation for multiple rapes have included former Elite boss Gérald Marie and Jean-Luc Brunel, the modelling agent who is said to have provided underage victims for the late American billionaire rapist Jeffrey Epstein.
Gérard Depardieu – who has been charged with raping and sexually abusing a 20-year-old actress in Paris – poses on the set of his latest film in the French capital with co-star Jade Labeste, 25. With them is director Patrice Leconte
Ms Bruni has also accused the French judiciary of convicting and sending her husband to prison ‘on no evidence’ earlier this year.
Sarkozy was found guilty of trying to bribe a judge, and is appealing his three-year sentence while on bail and facing other corruption allegations.
The most serious is that he accepted millions in illegal cash donations from the late Libyan dictator Colonel Muammar Gaddafi – a charge Sarkozy vehemently denies, along with all other allegations.
Beyond Depardieu, other stars of French cinema accused of rape include the director Luc Besson, whose films include Nikita and The Fifth Element.
Gérald Darmanin, France’s current Interior Minister, is also at the centre of a rape enquiry.
In the past, Ms Bruni also supported her friend Frédéric Mitterrand, one of her husband’s former ministers, after he admitted paying boys for sex in Thailand.
She has also backed Roman Polanski, the Paris-based film director, who continues to work despite fleeing the USA after pleading guilty to having unlawful sex with a 13-year-old girl.
Depardieu divorced his first wife, the actress Elisabeth Guignot in 1996, and has most recently been linked to Clémentine Igou, a 41-year-old Harvard University graduate and novelist.
The pair met in Italy in 2004 and were reportedly drawn to each other due to their mutual love of wine. In 2014, Depardieu claimed he sometimes drinks up to 14 bottles a day.
There was no immediate comment from Mr Depardieu or Ms Bruni about their appearances at the King’s Vegetable Garden concerts in July.