The Louvre May Take Far-Right Politician Marine Le Pen to Court for Using the Museum in a Campaign Video

Le Pen filmed the video in front of the museum's iconic pyramid without permission.

Screen shot from Marine Le Pen's campaign video.
Screen shot from Marine Le Pen's campaign video.

The Louvre may be taking legal action against politician Marine Le Pen, who leads the far-right National Rally party, for filming a presidential election campaign video with the Paris museum’s iconic architecture as a backdrop.

The three-and-a-half-minute clip that went live on Saturday, January 15, saw the 53-year-old Le Pen taking a stroll in front of the monumental glass pyramid designed by Chinese-American architect I.M. Pei while talking to the camera.

The location is exactly where the current president Emmanuel Macron made his victory speech five years ago, after defeating Le Pen in the election. He vowed to “guarantee the unity of the nation and … defend and protect Europe,” while “fighting the forces of division that undermine France.” 

In the new campaign video available on Le Pen’s Twitter page, she accused President Macron of failing to deliver what he promised during the victory speech and “betraying the French people through lies and dissimulation,” calling his politics “a Macronism that is toxic for the country.” Le Pen’s video, during which she told the French people “I need you at my side,” is part of her campaign to challenge President Macron when he runs for re-election in April.

The Louvre said in a statement that the video was shot by Le Pen and her team on January 11 “without any authorization from the museum, in violation of the rules of law applicable to public property and intellectual property.” The museum is studying the “possible consequences” for Le Pen and her crew for filming the clip outside of the pyramid.

Le Pen’s video has raised public concern over the museum being embroiled in political debates. In response to the Louvre’s request to remove the clip, a spokesperson for the National Rally said the museum did not want to cause trouble with Macron’s government, according to the Times in the U.K.

It is not the first time the Louvre has taken action against politicians who have shot videos using the former palace as a backdrop. The museum has asked anti-Islam pundit Éric Zemmour, who is also running against Macron, to take down his own video that was shot in front of the pyramid.


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