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.
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.”