Roman Polanski, who was found guilty of having sex with a minor in 1977 and has been a fugitive of the United States ever since, has set his next project: “J’Accuse,” which tells the story of a man who was falsely accused of a crime he didn’t commit and seeks to exonerate himself more than a decade later. It’s based on the true story of Captain Alfred Dreyfus, a French-Jewish soldier who was accused of spying for Germany in the 1890s, but initial reactions suggest that some believe the incident has personal resonance for Polanski.
In May of this year, the Oscar-winning filmmaker described the #MeToo movement as an example of “mass hysteria that occurs in society from time to time. Sometimes it’s very dramatic, like the French Revolution or the St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre in France, or sometimes it’s less bloody, like 1968 in Poland or McCarthyism in the U.S.”
Polanski won the Academy Award for Best Director in 2002 for “The Pianist” and was expelled from the Academy earlier this year. He became one of the most revered filmmakers in the world during the 1960s, when he directed such films as “Repulsion” and “Rosemary’s Baby”; his wife, Sharon Tate, was murdered by the Manson Family while eight months pregnant in August of 1969.
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Louis Garrel will star as Dreyfus in “J’Accuse,” with Jean Dujardin, Mathieu Amalric, Olivier Gourmet, and Polanski’s wife Emmanuelle Seigner completing the ensemble cast.