Actresses Walk Out Of Cesar Awards Ceremony After Roman Polanski Wins Three Awards

Despite being accused of sexually assaulting a woman in 1975, the director picked up multiple awards.

roman polanski

by Daisy Jordan |
Updated on

Several actresses walked out of the Cesar Awards ceremony in Paris, France, on Friday after Roman Polanski won an award for best director.

The crowd responded to the announcement of Polanski's triumph with boos and shouts, before female actors left the ceremony.

Among them was Adele Haenel, who recently spoke out about the sexual abuse she faced when she was 15 by another French director.

Speaking to The New York Times before the ceremony took place, Haenel said, 'Distinguishing Polanski is spitting in the face of all victims. It means raping women isn't that bad.'

Polanski, who won a further two awards for An Officer And A Spy, is facing a historical sexual assault claim against him.

Last year, a woman accused Polanski of raping her in 1975 when she was 18. The director denied it.

He is still wanted in the US years after he was charged with raping a 13-year-old girl in 1977. Despite pleading guilty to unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor, he was never sentenced as he fled the country.

In a statement released this week, the 86-year-old said he had decided not to attend the Cesar awards as he feared for his and his family's safety. He claimed the ceremony had turned into a 'public lynching'.

The film's cast and production team also chose not to attend. Jean Dujardin, who received a nomination for best actor, this week posted to Instagram, 'By making this film, I believed and I still believe I made more good than harm.'

As the ceremony took place, hundreds of protesters gathered to denounce the Cesar's decision to award Polanski.

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