The Sexist

Roman Polanski Still Victimized By People Who Would Deny Him Fancy Awards

Roman Polanski picked up the Best Director award at the Berlin Film Festival yesterday evening. Well, he didn't literally pick it up—his written acceptance statement is quick to remind the world of that recent unpleasantness that has inhibited Polanski from the very important business of fancy prize collection. From the Guardian:

The 76-year old film-maker, who was unable to attend the awards ceremony because he is under house arrest in his Swiss chalet, sent a pithy acceptance statement via his producers, saying: "Even if I could be there I wouldn't, because the last time I went to a festival to get a prize, I ended up in jail."

Some critics will argue that Polanski won the festival's "Silver Bear" award for best director solely based on the artistic merit of his film, the Ghost Writer, and not at all in order to exonerate him in his 30-year-old sex case. Polanski, apparently, is not one of them, as he continues to dangerously conflate his duel roles as famous film director and famous accused rapist.

To Polanski, the international justice system that has forced him to remain under house arrest until his case is resolved has intentionally victimized him as an artist, thereby denying the world the honor of celebrating the cinematic genius of Roman Polanski. In reality, Polanski didn't "end up in jail"—oh, what a passive victim he's played in this whole charade—because he showed up to receive accolades for his achievements. He "ended up in jail" because he failed to show up to receive punishment for his failures. Polanski isn't allowed to travel to Berlin because it's likely he will slip authorities and never return, like he did last time, and not because a bunch of sore federal governments just don't want poor Polanski to have a nice time for being such a swell director.

The international justice system, actually, is unconcerned with Polanski's creative output—it is exclusively concerned with Polanski's criminal history. In Roman Polanski's world, this singular view of the law is a travesty against art. And so, Polanski attempts to turn winning an award for a movie into a defiant act, a statement against all the critics who would criticize him—not on the basis of his art, but on the basis of him having sex with forcing sex on a 13-year-old and skipping town.

Making great films and sexually assaulting minors are not mutually exclusive activities. This obvious truth has yet to sink in for Polanski, and it probably never will. In Polanski's sad, ski-chalet-confined world, his cinematic gifts should be enough to set him free. Under this strange karmic equation, the benefit a film like the Ghost Writer provides to Berlin Film Festival judges like Werner Herzog and Renée Zellweger somehow balances out the harm Polanski caused to a 13-year-old girl in California 30 years ago. It's unclear whether Herzog, Zellweger, and the festival's other judges chose Polanski as Best Director out of political solidarity or pure artistic appreciation. If it's the former, the decision to honor Polanski sends the bizarre message that making a great film is not as important as making an incoherent political statement regarding your personal problems.

  • Jill

    Ha, ha, Marshall. Nothing like denigrating the judge b/c Polanski refuses to follow the law.

  • Melissa

    "I’m not saying that i’m right about this , but imagine
    this scenario.
    Could i be right ?"

    No. I can say with absolute certainty that you could not be right. Rape is never the victim's fault.

    Marshal, care to cite a source for your claims? Frankly, I don't believe you.

  • Don Heckers


    "Rape is never the victim's fault"
    Really ?
    In Holland there was a teacher who was seduced by a
    minor girl who was one of his students.
    The judge said that she had a certain blame for the
    seduction of a married teacher.
    And he didn't have to go to prison.
    The whole case ended with money.
    So you see , it's not always a matter of being a rich
    celebrity to buy your way out of trouble.
    If you have the judge on your side you can win a case
    of "sex with a minor" too.
    I don't have any feelings for minors but i'm taking
    Roman Polanski's side for many reasons.
    ONE of my reasons is that Americans make me angry with
    their bullshit stories.

  • Melissa

    I said that rape is never the victim's fault. I did not say that the victim is never blamed for his/her own rape.
    You're not going to shock me by mentioning ONE court case where the judge said the victim was to blame and the rapist got off. It happens all the freakin' time. That doesn't make it right, or true.

    Look, Americans make me angry with their bullshit stories too. That doesn't make Roman Polanski innocent.

  • Jill

    "In Holland there was a teacher who was seduced by a
    minor girl who was one of his students."

    Part of being an adult is being responsible for your behavior--more responsible than a child. That's why they don't have the right to vote or to move out to their own apartments or to sign contracts. This teacher showed an appalling lack of ethics and as the adult, he was responsible.

    Also, Roman is a child rapist and you are defending him.

  • Don Heckers


    What would you say to Roman Polanski if he was your
    brother ?
    Probably that should be ashamed of himself.
    And then what ?
    Life goes on , rape-case or no rape-case.
    I never said that Roman Polanski is innocent.
    He's guilty , i know , but unlike you , i keep thinking
    about the year 1977 when the rape was commited and the
    thought "Suppose Roman's wife Sharon Tate was not
    murdered by the Manson family , he would've had a wife
    and a son of seven years old".
    His entire life would've been different.
    And different circumstances create another kind of life.
    And give this some thought too : America doesn't extra-
    dite people to Europe to stand trial , so why the hell
    should we extradite Roman Polanski to the USA ?
    I personally wouldn't even have arrested him in 2009
    on America's order.
    Never in a million years.

  • Marshal

    Jill, Melissa - in contrast to you I'm an expert on the case and was in fact there. I’m only 16 yrs Polanski’s junior. What I cited are long known facts by now, but you seem to have missed them all, so maybe you should read some more unbiased articles and recent interviews to catch up. The original judge was removed by both attorneys for illegal misconduct for his biased handling of it to exploit it for who Polanski was. Polanski is not a 'child rapist' anyway, she was a teenager, and even the doctor examining her stated her as 'adult female' in his medical report, which in fact couldn't find any proof of forcible rape and/or sodomy she claimed. That’s why Polanski pled to unlawful sex with a minor on their agreement of no further jail time and probation, the mother in fact had pressed for after these findings and to avoid a trial. The judge however reneged on that plea against all counsel to save his public face and that's why Polanski fled. And that’s another reason why the Swiss won’t let him go, because the US courts are in dire straits with the legitimacy of the extradition in the first place. Otherwise they’d shipped him off long ago.

  • Don Heckers

    While people are calling Roman Polanski names , his
    victim Samantha Geimer isn't really a victim.
    She wants him to live in freedom.
    I think i'm gonna ask Roman Polanski the question if
    Samantha Geimer can have a part in "GOD OF CARNAGE" ,
    his brand new filmproject (to be released in 2012).

  • Jill

    Neither Don Heckers or Marshall appear to know how the criminal justice system works. You also don't get to leave the country for 30 years and then say that since the victim of the crime gave up, he should just be let scott free. That sends a message to anyone that they should really try to flee the country if they want to get out of being prosecuted.

    Also, calling a 13 year old "not really a victim" after being sexually violated by a 43 year old man is creepy. You guys have issues.