The woman who accused filmmaker Roman Polanski of rape in the 1970s, when she was a teenager, has revealed she didn't know that she was a victim of a sex crime at the time. Samantha Geimer claimed the director raped her during a party at Jack Nicholson's house in Los Angeles in 1977 when she was just 13 years old.
Polanski pleaded guilty to having unlawful sex with a minor, but left America and fled to his home in France a day before he was due to be sentenced.
He lived there for years before the scandal reared up again in 2009 when he was arrested in Switzerland and threatened with extradition to the U.S.
Geimer insists the sex act was not as it has been portrayed in the media, even though she now understands exactly what Polanski did.
She tells U.S. breakfast show Today, "I was 13, that makes it rape, but I didn't experience it that way... In my mind, I didn't know that was illegal, I didn't understand he could go to jail for that. I was young...
"Yes it was a bad thing to do and he knows that."
Geimer has previously revealed she has forgiven Polanski and still remains in touch with him through emails. She has detailed her one-night stand with the director and the controversy of her 35-year connection to him in a new book.
The girl who accused Roman Polanski of rape more than three decades ago has revealed she is still in touch with the film director, who she now regards as an ally. Samantha Geimer claimed Polanski raped her at Jack Nicholson's house in Los Angeles in 1977 when she was just 13 years old.
The director pleaded guilty to having unlawful sex with a minor, but left America and fled to Europe a day before he was due to be sentenced. He lived in France for years before the scandal reared up again in 2009 when he was arrested in Switzerland and threatened with extradition back to the U.S.
Geimer previously insisted she was "shocked" by Polanski's arrest and was glad he was eventually freed after a lengthy legal battle, and she has now revealed she has been keeping in touch with The Pianist director through emails.
She tells Britain's The Times, "People are still coming after both of us. We're both still being treated unfairly... It makes sense to be on the same team... We've both been punished. We both want to move on. We both might be considered victims."
Geimer is set to release her memoir, The Girl: A Life in the Shadow of Roman Polanski, in which she will detail her ordeal and the years afterwards, next week (beg16Sep13).
Famed director Roman Polanski has risked arrest and extradition to the U.S. after flying to Poland to attend the 38th Gdynia Film Festival, according to U.S. reports. The reclusive filmmaker has been living in France since the late 1970s, after he was indicted on unlawful sex charges, including the rape of Samantha Geimer, who was 13 when she met the Chinatown director at a party.
The scandal reared up again in 2009 when Polanski was arrested in Switzerland and threatened with extradition to face the 30-year-old sex charges, but he won his extradition battle and was allowed to return home to France.
However, he risked his freedom on Thursday (12Sep13) when he arrived Poland - where officials have an extradition treaty with the U.S. - and went ahead of his master class with film school students on Friday afternoon (13Sep13), according to The Hollywood Reporter.
He is also expected to attend the screening of his film Venus in Fur on Friday night.
Reclusive filmmaker Roman Polanski has opened up about his frustrations surrounding the ongoing legal ramifications of his 1970s sex scandal in a candid new interview with Vanity Fair magazine. The veteran star fled America and became an exile in France in the late 1970s after he was indicted on unlawful sex charges, including the rape of Samantha Geimer, who was 13 when she met the Chinatown director at a party.
The scandal reared up again in 2009 when Polanski was arrested in Switzerland and threatened with extradition to the U.S. to face the 30-year-old sex charges, but he won his extradition battle and was allowed to return home to France.
Polanski has now spoken out about his longrunning legal ordeal, claiming he initially went on the run because he was convinced the judge overseeing the case would sentence him to up to 50 years behind bars, despite having already served 42 days in jail as part of a 1977 plea bargain.
He tells Vanity Fair, "It was such a shock to learn that it's not finished (after completing his side of the plea deal), after they let you out of prison. Free! With your bundle under your arm, with the lawyer waiting for you outside, standing there, in your mind it's all over, it's finished. And then the judge changed his mind (about the plea deal). And I have to go back to prison, and nobody knows how long. I just could not go through that."
Polanski goes on to reveal his 2009 arrest came as a real surprise because the director had been "moving freely for 32 years" between his homes and his set locations in countries like Spain, Germany, Switzerland and Italy.
Filmmaker Roman Polanski's teenage sex victim is set to stir up controversy by using a photo the director allegedly took of her to illustrate her upcoming memoirs. Samantha Geimer's The Girl features a cover portrait of the 13 year old taken less than three weeks before her sex encounter with Polanski at a Hollywood party in 1977.
Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter the shot was taken by Polanski himself during a photoshoot with Geimer at her Woodland Hills, California home, and it featured in a batch of material her lawyer demanded the filmmaker hand over to his client during a civil trial a decade after the director fled to Europe in 1978 in a bid to avoid sentencing.
Geimer was back in the headlines in 2009 when Polanski was detained by Swiss police at Zurich Airport in relation to his outstanding U.S. arrest warrant. Swiss authorities threatened to extradite the director and placed him under house arrest. In July, 2010, the Swiss court rejected the U.S. request and released Polanski from custody.
Throughout his arrest and detention drama, Geimer insisted she had forgiven the filmmaker for what he did to her.
Polanski fled America and became an exile in France in the late 1970s after he was indicted on unlawful sex charges, including the rape of Samantha Geimer, who was 13 when she met the Chinatown director at a party.
Geimer later sued Polanski for sexual assault and emotional distress, and the pair eventually settled the lawsuit.
The scandal reared up again in 2009 when Polanski was arrested in Switzerland and threatened with extradition to the U.S. to face the 30-year-old sex charges. The filmmaker won his extradition battle and was allowed to return home to France.
Now Geimer has announced plans to reveal all about her fling with Polanski and her dealings with the filmmaker over the years in her book THE GIRL: Emerging from the Shadow of Roman Polanski, which is set for publication next year (13).
Now 47, Geimer was reluctant to speak about the scandal when Polanski was arrested in Switzerland three years ago, but now she states, "I offer my story now without rage, but with purpose - to share a tale that in its detail will reclaim my identity. I am more than 'Sex Victim Girl.'"
A spokesman for Atria Books, who will publish the book, states, "Writing this book will finally lay to rest many ghosts from those years, and answer many questions that have remained unresolved."
Last week (end02Oct11) the moviemaker offered an apology to Samantha Geimer, who he slept with at a party at actor Jack Nicholson's Hollywood home when she was under age.
Polanski, who fled to America in 1978 and skipped sentencing after he was convicted of unlawful sex with a minor, said in documentary Roman Polanski: A Film Memoir, "She is a double victim: my victim and a victim of the press."
The Rosemary's Baby director was arrested two years ago (09) on his way to the Zurich Film Festival in Switzerland, and after fighting extradition to the U.S., he was eventually freed last year (10) following several months custody and house arrest at his Swiss chalet.
Now Polanski has revealed the impact his actions have had on his life, telling Swiss television channel TSR, "I have regretted it for 33 years, of course I regret it."
The filmmaker also thanked Swiss officials for having the "respect" to refuse to extradite him.
The veteran director returned to the country this week (beg26Sep11) to pick up a lifetime achievement award at the event, two years after he was arrested on child sex charges dating back to 1977, while he was en route to the annual ceremony.
Polanski fled America in 1978 and skipped sentencing after he was convicted on a charge of unlawful sex with a minor, relating to Samantha Geimer, who was 13 when the filmmaker bedded her at a party at actor Jack Nicholson's Hollywood home.
After his arrest in Switzerland in 2009, the Rosemary's Baby director fought extradition to the U.S. and was eventually freed last year (10) following several months of jail time and house arrest at his Swiss chalet.
Polanski's life is now the focus of Laurent Bouzereau's new film Roman Polanski: A Film Memoir, which was shot while he was under house arrest, and during the film, the moviemaker offers a public apology to Geimer, saying "She is a double victim: my victim and a victim of the press."
The screening on Tuesday marked the film's world premiere.
The Rosemary's Baby director bedded Samantha Geimer at Jack Nicholson's house in 1977 and was later put on trial. He pleaded guilty to unlawful sex with a minor before fleeing to Europe on the eve of his sentencing and spent 30 years living in exile.
His sex crime caught up with him in 2009, when Swiss officials re-arrested him in Zurich.
U.S. prosecutors were engaged in months of legal wrangling with Swiss authorities to extradite Polanski to face justice - but they refused and the filmmaker was set free in July 2010.
Geimer gave her public support to Polanski throughout the extradition drama, urging the U.S. district attorney to drop the case, and now she's speaking out again to blast the way they handled the crime.
Geimer, now in her mid-40s, appeared on U.S. breakfast show Good Morning America on Thursday (10Mar11) and blamed the court officials for causing more damage to her in the aftermath of the crime than the sex act itself.
She said, "What I want people to know is that they don't understand what happened. They don't understand how poorly the courts handled it, what went on in the original case, and just how the whole situation has been used for the benefit of judges or district attorneys for their own personal, political gain, which has caused way more pain to my family than anything Roman Polanski has ever done. You shouldn't be damaged more by the court than by the crime..."
She claims she wasn't even alerted to the prosecution's plans to extradite Polanski - and was left "terrified" when the media began hounding her for a comment.
She explained, "I was terrified and shocked because I had no warning... They showed no regard for me, practically contempt for me. Not even a heads up."
Geimer insists she forgave Polanski years ago and appreciated a note of apology he sent her after the release of controversial documentary Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired.
She added, "It was (rape) because I was 13, but he didn't mean to hurt me; he thought it was all right and I was just scared. It was bad but it wasn't as bad as grand jury testimony, it wasn't as bad as having my sons traumatised by paparazzi. It's not as bad as the D.A.'s office making statements like, 'We're looking forward to seeing Mr. Polanski in court'."
The Rosemary's Baby director slept with Samantha Geimer at Jack Nicholson's house in the late 1970s and later pleaded guilty to unlawful sex with a minor.
He fled to Europe in 1977 before he was sentenced by a judge, and was re-arrested in Zurich, Switzerland in September last year (09) after flying in to the country for a film festival.
After months of legal wrangling, Swiss officials refused to extradite Polanski and set him free in July (10) - and Geimer has now spoken out to insist she is happy with the outcome.
She tells U.S. talk show host Larry King, "(When he was re-arrested) I was surprised. I was shocked. I was just terrified. I knew something bad was going to happen. I just didn't know what it was going to be, but I knew it could only be bad for me."
Asked by King if she is happy Polanski was not sent back to the U.S. to be sentenced, Geimer replied, "Yes. Very relieved... If just the arrest brought such a (media) ruckus into my life... I'm sure his coming back would just be a thousand times worse.
"So I'm very happy that, you know, I think they did the right thing. I'm happy they didn't extradite him. I don't want to see him go to trial. And I just certainly don't want to show up and be part of that if it happens...
"(The decision) doesn't bother me at all. I hope he continues to be successful. I hope he - you know, (I) wish nothing but the best for him and his family. We've all been through a lot. I'd like to see him just be sentenced to time served, and that we could both stop being used to continue this matter."