Sean Penn-Produced ‘C*A*U*G*H*T’ Drops Out of TV Trade Show MIPCOM Due to Israel-Hamas War

The series was supposed to hold an Oct. 18 panel at the Cannes-based conference

Sean Penn
Sean Penn attends the Opening Ceremony of the 73rd Berlinale International Film Festival Berlin (Photo by Gerald Matzka/Getty Images)

Sean Penn’s “C*A*U*G*H*T” has dropped out of the France-based TV trade conference MIPCOM due to war in Israel, according to multiple media reports.

Originally, the Australian series was supposed to hold a Media Mastermind Keynote at the international TV conference on October 18. Penn, series star Matthew Fox and creator, writer and director Kick Gurry were all supposed to be in attendance.

“In light of the current situation unfolding in Israel, we have taken the decision not to showcase ‘C*A*U*G*H*T’ at MIPCOM this year,” Fremantle said in a statement to Variety. “At this time, our hearts and thoughts are with our colleagues and our partners in Israel, and all those affected.”

Set in Cannes, MIPCOM is an international conference for TV and entertainment executives. It features several keynote presentations as well as international premieres and takes place from October 16 to October 19. This year, Eva Longoria, EbonyLife CEO Mo Abudu, president of international for Warner Bros. Discovery Gerhard Zeiler and CEO of Canal+ Group Maxime Saada are set to present, just to name a few of the high-level attendees. Now, Sean Penn will no longer be part of that list.

“C*A*U*G*H*T” first premiered in late September as an original series for the Australian streaming service Stan. It follows a band of Australian soldiers who are held captive when their hostage video goes viral. The series stars Ben O’Toole, Kick Gurry, Lincoln Younes, Alexander England and Mel Jarnson.

On Saturday, the Palestinian militant organization Hamas launched an attack on Israeli civilians. That led to Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declaring war on the organization. On Monday, President Joe Biden released a statement in support of Israel.

“The United States and the State of Israel are inseparable partners, and I affirmed to Prime Minister Netanyahu again when we spoke yesterday that the United States will continue to make sure Israel has what it needs to defend itself and its people,” the White House statement reads.

Freemantle, the production company behind “C*A*U*G*H*T,” and MIPCOM did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment.


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