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Sundance Watch: 'Partisan' spotlights child assassins

Associated Press logo Associated Press 1/27/2015 By RYAN PEARSON, AP Entertainment Reporter
In this Jan. 26, 2015 photo, Vincent Cassel, left, and Jeremy Chabriel pose for a portrait to promote the film, "Partisan", at the Eddie Bauer Adventure House during the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Victoria Will/Invision/AP) © The Associated Press In this Jan. 26, 2015 photo, Vincent Cassel, left, and Jeremy Chabriel pose for a portrait to promote the film, "Partisan", at the Eddie Bauer Adventure House during the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Victoria Will/Invision/AP)

PARK CITY, Utah (AP) — French actor Vincent Cassel is linking his Sundance movie "Partisan" — about the training of child assassins — to the Charlie Hebdo terror attacks.

In this Jan. 26, 2015 photo, Vincent Cassel, left, and Jeremy Chabriel pose for a portrait to promote the film, "Partisan", at the Eddie Bauer Adventure House during the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Victoria Will/Invision/AP) © The Associated Press In this Jan. 26, 2015 photo, Vincent Cassel, left, and Jeremy Chabriel pose for a portrait to promote the film, "Partisan", at the Eddie Bauer Adventure House during the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Victoria Will/Invision/AP)

Cassel plays a teacher and mentor to young boys learning how to kill in the film, based on real-life reports from Colombia. He says the themes are relevant to the discussion in France in the wake of the Jan. 7 assault on the satirical newspaper.

"What just happened in France with the Charlie Hebdo thing ... the discussion right now in France is very much about education and how come kids popping out of nowhere suddenly decide to go on a jihad and kill people," Cassel said.

Cassel, who said he wasn't in Paris at the time of the attacks, stands strongly behind Charlie Hebdo's sometimes provocative philosophy.

"I personally think we should be able to make fun of anything. Anything. To make fun of things is actually a very healthy thing," Cassel said. "The minute you censor yourself, it's the end of freedom really."

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