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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Polish film school students petition against filmmaker Polanski

28.11.2019 08:30
An online petition has been launched demanding that a planned meeting with Polish-French filmmaker Roman Polanski at the Łódź Film School be cancelled, the 'Rzeczpospolita' daily has reported.
Pixabay.com
Pixabay.comBokskapet/CC0 Creative Commons

Students, staff members and graduates of the facility said that accusations against the director are too serious to be ignored, the daily reported.

Polanski is scheduled to appear in Łódź, central Poland, on November 29 and 30 as a guest at the 24th Cinergia European Cinema Forum.

The school’s authorities have organized a meeting with the artist. The idea, however, has sparked opposition, the paper reported.

The authors of the petition said: “The Film School, like any other educational institution, should be a place where sexual violence is condemned.”

They added that “Polanski is accused of at least five such acts. The youngest of the alleged victims was ten years old. It is not up to us to judge whether these accusations are true or not. At the same time, we believe that the seriousness of these accusations and their number render it disrespectful for all those who have experienced violent sexual behaviour to meet Mr Polanski in the School. Such people are also among us, they are part of our school community.”

The authors of the petition added that the institution should not make exceptions to the "universal ethical principles" enshrined in the school's statute.

The appeal has so far been signed by over a hundred people.

The school’s rector Mariusz Grzegorzek said in a statement published on Facebook that he was "trying to understand the doubts related to the director's visit to [the school], but does not fully share the views of many outraged people."

Grzegorzek said: "Human life is a complex, pulsating phenomenon that requires attention and respect. We artists should understand that."

He added: “It is not up to us to pass judgments in cases as ambiguous and complicated as the charges against Roman Polanski. Expressing indignation and slamming the door in front of him by us, the community of his alma mater, seems to be an extremely inappropriate act.”

Polanski fled the US in February 1978, shortly before being sentenced for unlawful sex with a 13-year-old girl. He settled in Paris, where he has been chiefly based ever since.

(aba/pk)

Source: Rzeczpospolita