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"The Stadium" – a new short film from PACE to raise awareness of the sexual abuse ​of children​ in sport

Launch of "The Stadium", a film by Roland Edzard to raise awareness of sexual violence against children in sport

The Stadium, a powerful new short film which aims to raise awareness of sexual violence against children in sport, has been launched by PACE to coincide with the start of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Launched on the eve of the European Day on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse (18 November), the new film has been conceived and directed by French film-maker Roland Edzard. It is a follow-up to his award-winning 2013 film, The Lake, seen millions of times on TV and the web, which focused on sexual abuse against children within the circle of trust.

The new film portrays a young boy in school surroundings where, under psychological pressure, he is being manipulated and sexually abused by his football coach. The damage caused by the abuse becomes clear when his anger and confusion spill out on the field.

“It is an outrage that, today in Europe, so many children are victims of sexual abuse,” said PACE President Tiny Kox. “Our sincere hope is that this new film - building on the success of The Lake - will encourage young people facing abuse to talk about their experiences openly and without fear, so that they can be provided with the support they need.”

The Stadium has been produced in four languages, French, English, German and Italian, and the original French has been subtitled in five more, Greek, Romanian, Spanish, Ukrainian and Russian. Each clip is available in a long version for TV (around 2 minutes) and a short version for social media (around 40 seconds).

The film will be rolled out across Council of Europe web and social media platforms, and offered to TV stations across Europe as well as partner organisations in the worlds of sport, education and civil society.

Watch The Stadium on the Assembly’s YouTube channel here or download it, in different languages and formats, via Vimeo here. It may be used free of charge in any non-commercial context. To receive a version in full broadcast quality, please contact the PACE Communication Division.