Swiss court rejects director's bail appeal
German Film Academy co-prexies have been forced to alter an official statement protesting Roman Polanski’s arrest last month at Zurich airport in connection with his 1977 conviction for unlawful sex.Senta Berger and Guenter Rohrbach said they stand by their statement protesting “the methods of Swiss authorities, but in view of the sensitive nature of the matter, it should be regarded as a personal opinion.” Polanski’s arrest continues to divide the German film industry. A number of high-profile supporters were quick to protest Polanski’s capture, including Berlinale topper Dieter Kosslick, Wim Wenders, Volker Schlondorff, Tom Tykwer and Studio Babelsberg, which co-produced Polanski’s upcoming “The Ghost.” Yet approval of the arrest and his possible extradition appears to be on the rise. Prominent German feminist writer and publisher Alice Schwarzer and some academy members objected to the toppers’ sentiments. The news comes as a Swiss court Tuesday rejected Polanski’s appeal to be released on bail while justice officials review an extradition request from the U.S. Dept. of Justice. Switzerland’s highest criminal court upheld a ruling by a lower court that found there was a high risk of the 76-year-old fleeing the country if he were released. Polanski may appeal the ruling at the Swiss Supreme Court in Lausanne. In a recent magazine column, Schwarzer lambasted the German film industry for its support of Polanski, who she compared to the many Catholic priests found guilty of child molestation. “When a priest is finally brought to justice after decades for the abuse and rape of a minor, everyone is content. When a director like Roman Polanski, who admitted to repeatedly raping a 13-year-old, is brought to justice, many are outraged.”
Want Entertainment News First? Sign up for Variety Alerts and Newsletters!