There was a huge uproar, with many filmakers, actors, and producers coming out in support of Polanski and his "unjust treatment" because of his "extraordinary talent."
To recap: Polanski drugged and raped (and sodomized) a 13-year-old girl. He pleaded guilty to "engaging in unlawful sexual intercourse," a lesser offense, in a deal to preserve the girl's anonymity. To escape sentencing he fled the country and never came back. He remarried and lived as a free man in Europe for thirty years. He continued to work. The 13-year-old-girl, now all grown up and wanting to move on with her life and stop being asked about Polanski all time time, tells people to just let it go.
For the record, the situation with this child was hardly a solitary "lapse in judgment" on Polanski's part. His first two wives were younger than he, though both were certainly legal. Then there was the 13-year-old-girl. Then 15-year-old Nastassja Kinski when he was 43 (they dated for a few years). He's currently married to Emmanuelle Seigner, who is 33 years his junior. That wouldn't be so unusual for Hollywood, perhaps, if it weren't for the larger pattern. She was in her early 20's when they married. (See link below for his chilling commentary on the normalcy of his desires.)
Does this mean that I can ignore any laws I want as long as I'm talented enough?
If rape is wrong, then rape is wrong. Why should a convicted rapist get a free pass because he left the country and eluded arrest for years? Horrible precedent.
Backlash builds against support of Polanski
"on ABC's "The View," in which panelist and actress Whoopi Goldberg made the comment that she didn't believe the original charges against Polanski were for "rape-rape," as what he views as a pervasive attitude.
"I assume [Goldberg] regrets saying what she said, but she really didn't say anything that is not under the surface anyway," Weeks said. "This is just the attitude, that children are property and crimes against them are not real crimes." Video Watch a discussion of about Polanski's supporters »
Goldberg's fellow panelist, Sherri Shepherd, said during the show that she believed Polanski should still be punished.
On Twitter, she tweeted, "Whew... long day at 'The View'... two shows today... hot debate over the Statutory Rapist Polanski. 45-year-old man plies a 13-yr-old w/drugs & Liquor and anally & orally penetrates her w/o her consent is a RAPIST. We hunt down 75-year-old Nazis. We must protect our children."
Actress Kirstie Alley wrote on Twitter "JUST FOR THE RECORD....RAPE IS RAPE...this is one HOLLYWOOD STAR who does not CELEBRATE or DEFEND Roman Polanski..his ART did not RAPE her.""
Earlier in that CNN article (link above) there's a list of celebrities who signed "a petition which states, "Roman Polanski is a French citizen, a renown and international artist now facing extradition. This extradition, if it takes place, will be heavy in consequences and will take away his freedom.""
Well, yes. That's generally how we punish rapists. And child molesters.
Filmmakers demand Polanski's release
Artist Rally Behind Polanski
Reminder: Roman Polanski raped a child Finally arrested 32 years after he fled sentencing for unlawful sex with a minor, the director is ... a big hero?
"Everyone wants to f--- young girls."
Sanity: Roman Polanski Has a Lot of Friends (I really wish I could write like Pollitt.)
I'm going to remember the names of some "stars" who support Polanski:
Woody Allen, Martin Scorsese and John Landis
Penelope Cruz, Tilda Swinton and Monica Bellucci
and many, many others.
A positive suggestion from the internet: "Instead of making the petition about releasing Polanski it should be stated as a petition for the social approval of drugging and raping a 13-year-old child."
Petition for the Release of Roman Polanski