The European Commission hasformally demanded that France revisit its laws regarding advertising for filmsand books.

France is one of the rare countriesto have legislation outlawing television adverts for films and books. TheCommission noted that the laws "violate the freedom of those who offer theseservices." Should France not respond favorably to the suggestions within thenext two months, the Commission plans to take the case to the European Court ofJustice.

The Commission says it islooking for "less restrictive measures" which would still allow for culturaldiversity.

France's argument has alwaysbeen that by allowing TV advertising for films the major US studios would begiven a boost as their budgets would overwhelm local films.

However, the Commission notedthat by outlawing TV adverts for film other EU member states are put at adisadvantage because the current situation "limits the possibility (for them)to penetrate the French market."

The last time the issue wasdiscussed, in 2002, Jean-Jacques Aillagon was still culture minister. WithRenaud Donnedieu de Vabres now in office there is a strong possibility that theCommission's demands could be met.