He is not yet a politician. He is currently a real estate tycoon, who is taking lessons in cunning from a sulphurous lawyer. Director Ali Abbasi unveiled his biopic of young Donald Trump, entitled The Apprentice, at the Cannes Film Festival, where he is vying for the Palme d’Or. A title in reference to the reality TV show that the 45th President of the United States hosted in 2004.

But Donald Trump is visibly afraid of not liking the feature film. He wishes he wouldn’t go out. His campaign spokesperson, Steven Cheung, announced Monday to the weekly Variety: “We will take legal action to respond to the blatantly false claims of these so-called filmmakers.”

The political advisor, who in all likelihood has not seen the film, continues: “This nonsense is pure fiction that sensationalizes long-debunked lies. As with Biden’s illegal trials, this is election interference by Hollywood elites, who know that President Trump will take back the White House and beat their candidate because nothing they did ‘has worked.” A speech that Roy Cohn, the lawyer who taught Donald Trump, as we see in The Apprentice, to attack and counterattack, would undoubtedly applaud.

Ali Abbasi’s film is certainly not a hagiography. The young tycoon gets involved in some shenanigans, between two liposuction sessions. We also see a scene of marital rape. According to Étienne Sorin, critic at Le Figaro, the script is excellent and the main actor, Sebastian Stan, convincing. “The Apprentice never judges the character. He doesn’t look at it overhead,” he explains.

Also readOur review of The Apprentice: the explosive biopic of Donald Trump hits the screen at Cannes

“This “film” is pure malicious defamation. It should not see the light of day and does not even deserve a place in the “direct-to-video” section of a sale bin in a discount store ready to go out of business. It belongs in a dumpster,” concludes Steven Cheung.

Ali Abbasi was invited, on the Croisette, to react to these legal threats. “We often talk about Trump pursuing a lot of people, but more rarely about the success rate of these companies,” notes the forty-year-old, who explains that he suggested he watch the film. The filmmaker doesn’t think he would hate it. Rather, he thinks he would be “surprised.” And reiterates his proposal “to go meet him wherever he wants and talk about the context of the film, have a screening and then discuss.”

As for the release date of The Apprentice in the United States, the director to whom we also owe Les Nuits de Mashhad (2022) raised the possibility of showing it in theaters in September, two months before the election presidential.