Heard by deputies on Thursday, the controversial host Cyril Hanouna presented himself as a champion of “popular” TV, ensuring that controversies only represented “0.1%” of his air time. “There is real relentlessness on my shows, we know that. I’m disturbing,” assured Cyril Hanouna during his highly anticipated hearing by the National Assembly’s commission of inquiry into the allocation of TNT frequencies.

“I think that there is really a form of lobby which means that people want to take me out of the audiovisual landscape,” added the presenter of “Touche pas à mon poste” (TPMP) on C8. “The facts for which we are here today represent 0.1% of the antenna,” he continued, while conceding that “for some of them”, they “should not have been pass”. “For a live broadcast every day which has been on the air for 5,000 hours, I think we are doing well”, and “we have fines which, for me, are disproportionate”, he said. estimated. Far from the verbal and sartorial exuberance that he displays in TPMP, the host, in a sober black shirt and suit, said he was keen to “answer the questions” of the deputies to “explain what (he) does to the daily”.

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“I am not coming to a trial, I am coming to debate and discuss with you,” he assured. “I am very happy to be here even if many think it is a sanction for me.” The host and producer is used to slip-ups on set and his shows have earned C8 a barrage of sanctions in recent years from Arcom, the media regulator, for a total of 7.5 million euros in fines. . Half of that amount comes from a single incident. In November 2022, Cyril Hanouna insulted LFI deputy Louis Boyard live, who was previously a columnist on his show.

This led to a record fine of 3.5 million euros for C8, and a complaint from the elected official against the host for public insult. The host responded by suing him for defamation. “I regret my comments towards Louis Boyard, but when Louis Boyard came on set, I was not seeing a deputy – I should have – but I was seeing a friend who had betrayed me live,” Cyril explained. Hanouna. “I kindly invite him on a subject, he had premeditated a happening”, declared Cyril Hanouna, judging that Louis Boyard had wanted to “bring him off his hinges” and had “succeeded”.

On set, Louis Boyard accused the “five richest people” in France of “impoverishing Africa”. He cited billionaire Vincent Bolloré, owner of the Canal group (to which C8 belongs), who himself was heard by the commission of inquiry on Wednesday. Louis Boyard did not attend Cyril Hanouna’s hearing. “It was never planned that Louis Boyard would question Hanouna, for ethical reasons,” assured the LFI group.

At the start of his audition, Cyril Hanouna, for whom TV was “a dream”, assured that he had “always wanted TPMP to be a popular show”. He launched it in 2010 on France 4, a public channel, then exploded in the media after its transfer in 2012 to Direct 8, now C8. “I give everyone a chance to speak, that’s what my shows are all about,” he said. “No one can say who I’m voting for (…). I am here to give everyone a voice and show all the forces present that represent France,” he insisted.

He and CNews, another channel in the fold of Louis Bolloré, are regularly accused by left-wing figures of promoting far-right opinions, which they dispute. Sunday, on X, Cyril Hanouna had promised “a special program on the full debrief” of his hearing. He did the same after those of February 29, in which CNews headliners Pascal Praud, Laurence Ferrari and Sonia Mabrouk participated, denouncing “a political tribunal”.