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Warn: use convmv or detox if you can: they are the right tools.
But if you want to do it manually, you can use this command to find the problematic files and transliterate their accented characters to their ascii equivalent.
(Useful when doing cd backup: growisofs may fail on files which come from the old iso8859-* days.)
This command is a powerful "detoxifier" that eliminates special chars, spaces and all those little chars we don't like. It support several "sequences" so be sure to check your /usr/local/etc/detoxrc while at it... and maybe define your own