Polanski a 'shocking' pick' for French ceremony

2017-01-22 06:57
(File, AP)

(File, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Paris - France's minister for women's rights says she found it "surprising and shocking" that controversial Franco-Polish filmmaker Roman Polanski was chosen to preside over France's equivalent of the Oscars.

The award-winning director of Chinatown and Rosemary's Baby has been wanted in the US for almost four decades for the rape of a 13-year-old girl in Los Angeles.

The decision to honour him at France's annual Cesars ceremony has infuriated women's groups, with many taking to social media to call for a boycott of the televised show.

Minister Laurence Rossignol told France Culture radio she found it "surprising and shocking that a rape case counts for little in the life of a man".

The choice of 83-year-old Polanski to head the Cesars jury showed "an indifference with regard to the acts of which he is accused" and "a sort of banalisation of rape," she said.

A petition calling for him to be removed as president of the 42nd Cesars, to take place in Paris on February 24, had garnered over 42 000 signatures by Friday.

House arrest

The French Academy of Cinema Arts and Techniques however praised the director as an "insatiable aesthete".

Polanski was accused of drugging Samantha Gailey before raping her at a friend's house in Los Angeles in 1977.

He pleaded guilty to having unlawful sex with a minor, or statutory rape, as part of a plea bargain, but later fled to France.

Polanski said he was convinced that US authorities would scrap the plea deal and hand him a hefty prison sentence.

He was arrested in Switzerland in 2009 on a US extradition request and spent 10 months under house arrest before Bern rejected the US order.

The US then asked Poland to extradite him in January 2015, but a Krakow court rejected the demand in October, with the country's supreme court backing the decision two months later.

Read more on:    roman polanski  |  france  |  sexual assault

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Does your dog have separation anxiety?

We've got tips, advice and how to help your dog

 
 

Paws

Fascinating facts about dogs
Perfectly captured cat snapchats!
Out with the old dog, in with the new
Play with your pet when you're not at home
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.