Leadership of 'French Oscars' resigns amid Polanski controversy

FILE PHOTO: Movie director Roman Polanski arrives on the Madeleine Church in Paris, France, December nine, 2017. REUTERS/Charles Platiau/Report Picture

PARIS (Reuters) – The control of the “French Oscars” resigned en masse on Thursday after weeks of controversy targeted on director Roman Polanski, whose newest movie “An Officer and a Secret agent” leads nominations forward of the 2020 awards rite.

The resignations come simply two weeks earlier than the Cesar Awards, France’s identical of the Oscars, which featured 12 nominations for Polanski’s film about Alfred Dreyfus, a Jewish French officer unfairly accused of spying for Germany within the 1890s.

“To honor those that made motion pictures in 2019, to regain serenity and make the cinema pageant a birthday celebration, the board of administrators of the (movie academy) made a unanimous determination to surrender,” the French movie academy mentioned in a observation.

Feminist teams had decried the nominations and known as for a boycott of the movie. Dozens of movie business personalities – together with “X-Males” actor Omar Sy and Berenice Bejo of the 2011 movie “The Artist” – had denounced the academy’s “opaqueness” in an open letter.

Polanski introduced his new movie in France remaining yr simply days after a French actress accused him of getting raped her in 1975, when she used to be 18 years previous, right through a ski vacation in Gstaad, Switzerland.

Polanski, now 86, has denied the accusation.

The French-Polish director fled america after pleading responsible in 1977 to having illegal intercourse with a 13-year-old woman in Los Angeles.

Accusations towards Polanski predate the sexual harassment scandal that embroiled Hollywood movie manufacturer Harvey Weinstein in 2017. However Polanski’s historical past got here beneath renewed scrutiny because the #MeToo motion towards sexual abuse and harassment grew according to the allegations towards Weinstein, who’s on trial for rape and sexual attack in New York.

Polanski used to be expelled from the Academy of Movement Image Arts and Sciences in 2018.

Reporting through Michel Rose; enhancing through Jonathan Oatis

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