Petition for Roman Polanski
have learned the astonishing news of Roman Polanski’s arrest by the
Swiss police on September 26th, upon arrival in Zurich (Switzerland) while
on his way to a film festival where he was due to receive an award for his
career in filmmaking.
arrest follows an American arrest warrant dating from 1978 against the
filmmaker, in a case of morals.
in France, in Europe, in the United States and around the world are
dismayed by this decision. It seems inadmissible to them that an
international cultural event, paying homage to one of the greatest
contemporary filmmakers, is used by the police to apprehend him.
their extraterritorial nature, film festivals the world over have always
permitted works to be shown and for filmmakers to present them freely and
safely, even when certain States opposed this.
arrest of Roman Polanski in a neutral country, where he assumed he could
travel without hindrance, undermines this tradition: it opens the way for
actions of which no one can know the effects.
Polanski is a French citizen, a renown and international artist now facing
extradition. This extradition, if it takes place, will be heavy in
consequences and will take away his freedom.
actors, producers and technicians—everyone involved in international
filmmaking—want him to know that he has their support and friendship.
September 16th, 2009, Mr. Charles Rivkin, the US Ambassador to France,
received French artists and intellectuals at the embassy. He presented to
them the new Minister Counselor for Public Affairs at the embassy, Ms
Judith Baroody. In perfect French she lauded the Franco-American
friendship and recommended the development of cultural relations between
our two countries.
only in the name of this friendship between our two countries, we demand
the immediate release of Roman Polanski.