A couple of days ago I happened to catch part of some TV show that was counting down the top Hollywood scandals of all time. Of course, right near the top of that list was Roman Polanski and his alleged rape of 13-year-old Samantha Geimer, which lead to him living in France for some 30 years in order to avoid serving time in the U.S. He continued to make movies, and over the years, it seems that many people have forgiven him for what he has done (he received a standing ovation at the Academy Awards in 2004 for The Pianist, despite his absence). Even Geimer herself has requested that the charges be dropped. Now Polanski has officially filed a complaint with the Los Angeles Superior Court to have the charges of sexual misconduct dismissed once and for all.
Apparently this has come about partly in response to the recent documentary Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired, which revealed potentially unlawful and unethical conduct on the part of deputy district attorney David Wells at the time. A hearing has been set for Jan. 21st, at which point it’s possible that Polanski will no longer be considered a fugitive. I have yet to see the aforementioned documentary, but this is clearly a tricky issue. Polanski himself did plead guilty to the charges at the time, but on the other hand, there’s no question that he’s had a pretty messed up life. Not only is he a Holocaust survivor, but his wife Sharon Tate was murdered by members of Charles Manson’s cult. People make mistakes and people change, and yet, he never did serve any time for what he did. What do you think, does Polanski deserve to finally have his name cleared, or is this just another example of a double standard for the rich and famous?