Monday, January 18, 2010

Roman Polanski

Journalists based outside Polanski's Gstaad chalet

The Roman Polanski trial now involves the US, Swiss and French legal systems. In 1977, Polanski was charged in the US with sexual assault of a minor and fled to France during the trial. In 2005, an international arrest warrant was issued which resulted in his September 2009 arrest in Switzerland, where he remains. Polanski has requested to be sentenced in Switzerland but this has been appealed by the prosecution. Recent photographs of Polanski under Swiss house arrest showed him indoors with his children. This violates French privacy law which only allows photos to be taken in open public spaces. Polanski has now sued Le Journal du Dimanche, the main French Sunday paper. Read more on the French lawsuit here.

Polanski on trial, 1978, from "Roman Polanski: Wanted & Desired"

The media attention surrounding Polanski's case is in part due to his high profile role as a director. He was first subject to mass media attention in 1969 when his wife Sharon Tate was murdered. His early life was also problematic as his parents were forced into concentration camps. Polanski survived using a false name in the Krakow ghetto. His first feature film was in Polish, Nóż w wodzie (Knife in the Water), 1962, which earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Foreign Film. He won an Academy Award in 2002 for The Pianist.

Nóż w wodzie (Knife in the Water), 1962

Repulsion, 1965

Fearless Vampire Killers, 1967

Rosemary's Baby, 1968

Chinatown, 1974

Tess, 1979

The Pianist, 2002

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