ENTERTAINMENT
29/09/2018 09:43 BST | Updated 29/09/2018 09:44 BST

Roman Polanski's New Film 'J'Accuse' Branded 'Tone Deaf' Post-'Me Too' Movement

The news has not been well-received on social media.

The news of Roman Polanski’s new film has not gone down well on social media, with many branding the project a tone-deaf move, following the rise of the ‘Me Too’ movement.

Polanski - who is unable to return to the United States, after pleading to a charge of unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor more than 40 years ago - will direct ‘J’Accuse’, which begins shooting in Paris later this year.

Laurent Viteur via Getty Images
Roman Polanski

The film tells the story of The Dreyfus Affair, in which French-Jewish soldier Captain Alfred Dreyfus was wrongfully accused of spying for the Germans in the 1890s.

Talk of the project first began as far back as 2012, when Polanski told reporters at the Cannes Film Festival that the story, centring around “the age-old spectacle of the witch hunt”, was “absolutely relevant” in contemporary society.

However, following the news that the wheels were now in motion for ‘J’Accuse’, many have suggested that a film centring around a high-profile case of false allegation, directed by a man still on the run from the US over a sex crime he pleaded guilty to, was not a film that needed to be made post-‘Me Too’…

Polanski has been openly critical of the ‘Me Too’ movement, since it gained huge momentum after a number of women came forward with allegations of sexual abuse against Harvey Weinstein (the film mogul has always denied all accusations of rape).

The ‘Rosemary’s Baby’ director said back in May the movement was rooted in “hypocrisy”, claiming: “I think this is the kind 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 US.

“Everyone is trying to back this movement, mainly out of fear... I think it’s total hypocrisy.”

  • Rape Crisis services for women and girls who have been raped or have experienced sexual violence - 0808 802 9999
  • Survivors UK offers support for men and boys - 0203 598 3898