Actresses walk out of Cesar Awards over Roman Polanski win

29 February 2020, 09:52

Roman Polanski won three awards
Roman Polanski won three awards. Picture: PA

By Maddie Goodfellow

Several actresses have walked out of the Cesar Awards ceremony in Paris after Roman Polanski won the best director award.

Polanski, 86, is facing a historical sex assault claim against him.

He was also convicted of the statutory rape of a thirteen year old in 1977.

Polanski fled to the US following his conviction, and has since faced a stream of further allegations.

He denies all of the latest claims against him.

The director did not attend the ceremony on Friday, saying he feared for the safety of him and his family.

In a statement made earlier this week, Polanski said the ceremony had turned into a "pubic lynching".

An Officer And A Spy, his latest film, picked up three awards.

Actress Adele Haenel walked out
Actress Adele Haenel walked out. Picture: PA
There were protests outside the awards ceremony
There were protests outside the awards ceremony. Picture: PA

Actress Adèle Haenel, who revealed last year that she has been sexually assaulted by a director as a child, was one of the actresses who chose to leave.

She shouted "Shame!" as she left the room. She was followed director Céline Sciamma.

"Distinguishing Polanski is spitting in the face of all victims. It means raping women isn't that bad," she said.

Actress and comedian Florence Foresti, who presented at the ceremony, didn’t return to the stage after the best director award was announced. 

She later posted an Instagram story simply saying the word "disgusting".

Earlier this month, the entire Cesar board resigned after weeks of controversy over Polanski's nomination.

Protestors also clashed with police outside the ceremony, with people holding placards calling for change in "an industry that protects rapists".

It comes just days after director Harvey Weinstein was convicted of sexual assault and rape by a New York court.

Latest World News

See more Latest World News

Kenya Election

Kenya’s deputy president Ruto declared election winner

Ikea Shanghai

Shoppers rush the doors in Shanghai Ikea after flash Covid lockdown ordered

Russia Ukraine War

Russian shells slam into eastern Ukraine, killing three

Norway Bridge Collapse

Drivers rescued as bridge in Norway collapses

The propagandist posted images of himself at the HQ on Telegram

Ukraine blows up Russia's 'Wagner mercenary HQ' after street sign gives away location

Armenia Explosion

Death toll in Armenia fireworks depot blast reaches six

Afghanistan

Afghanistan marks one year since Taliban seizure as woes mount

Adele Milloz

World champion ski mountaineer Adele Milloz dies after fall while climbing in the Alps

Myanmar Suu Kyi

Myanmar court convicts Suu Kyi on more corruption charges

Russia Griner

Lawyers appeal against Brittney Griner’s Russian prison sentence

Red panda

Red panda found in fig tree after escaping Australian zoo

Freya the walrus has been killed in Norway after crowds kept getting too close

Freya the walrus put to death in Norway because public wouldn’t stay away

Sir Salman Rushdie incident

Iran denies involvement in attack on Sir Salman Rushdie

Taiwan US China

China announces new military drills as US politicians visit Taiwan

Anne Heche's life support has been withdrawn after her husband shared a tearful tribute

Anne Heche's life support switched off as ex-husband pays tribute to 'brave and fearless' Hollywood star

Sir Salman Rushdie, far left and top right, and the suspect Hadi Matar, 24 (bottom right)

Salman Rushdie ‘brought attack on himself’ claims Iran’s foreign ministry