Roman Polanski, Woody Allen & Luc Besson will have films at the Venice Film Festival

The Venice, Deauville and Toronto Film Festivals are coming up in the next few months, but it looks like the writers’ and actors’ strikes will probably extend into the fall, especially with AMPTP refusing to come to the negotiations this week. Which means no SAG or WGA union member will travel to any summer film festival to promote their films. In Venice, they’re trying to carry on like nothing is happening and they’ll have big premieres for European and Asian films. Venice has planned premieres for films by… Woody Allen, Roman Polanski and Luc Besson. I just-

Despite ongoing strikes in Hollywood that led to the exodus of Luca Guadagnino’s Challengers from its opening slot last week, the Venice Film Festival will proceed—but not without a wave of early backlash. When the prestigious festival unveiled its lineup on Tuesday, alongside films from Sofia Coppola, David Fincher, Ava DuVernay, and Bradley Cooper were works from a trio of men accused of sexual misconduct. Woody Allen’s Coup de Chance and Roman Polanski’s The Palace each scored out-of-competition slots, while Luc Besson will debut his new feature, DogMan, in competition at the fest.

“Luc Besson has been recently fully cleared of any accusations. Woody Allen went under legal scrutiny twice at the end of the ’90s and was absolved. With them, I don’t see where the issue is,” Venice Film Festival artistic director Alberto Barbera told Variety in defense of their inclusion in the lineup.

“In Polanski’s case, it’s paradoxical,” Barbera argued. “It’s been 60 years. Polanski has admitted his responsibility. He’s asked to be forgiven. He’s been forgiven by the victim. The victim has asked for the issue to be put to rest. I think that to keep beating on Polanski means seeking a scapegoat for other situations that would deserve more attention,” he continued, adding, “I am on the side of those who say you have to distinguish between the responsibilities of the individual and that of the artist.”

Polanski will not be attending the festival, which runs from August 30 to September 9. Barbera is “not sure” that Allen “will be doing press,” but “he is coming to the film’s premiere for sure.”

[From Vanity Fair]

VF summarized the charges and credible accusations against the men – Woody Allen was accused of abusing his daughter, multiple women have credibly accused Besson of rape and assault (Besson was cleared in a French court last month) and Polanski pleaded guilty to raping a minor, and he’s also been credibly accused of multiple assaults and rapes across Europe. This is just a reminder, to me, that these European festivals have a long history of using their “glamour” to rehabilitate abusers. It’s not just Cannes, although Cannes is the biggest and most recent example, especially given the reception Johnny Depp got just a few months ago. Anyway, no thanks to all of this.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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20 Responses to “Roman Polanski, Woody Allen & Luc Besson will have films at the Venice Film Festival”

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  1. Lady D says:

    Venice Slime Festival.

    • AlpineWitch says:

      They’ve always been disgusting as far as I remember (I was born in Italy many, many moons ago), so the fact they invited sexual assaulters, predators and rapists this year is no news to me. They thrive on what they perceive it’ll give them the most mediatic exposure so hence why they constantly invite the scum of the Earth.

  2. Coco says:

    They should have invited Brad Pitt, Johnny Depp, Mel Gibson, Bill Cosby, with a special guest appearance of Harvey Weinstein and give them all standing ovations because WTF is this sh*t show.

    • Megan says:

      It’s clear Time’s Up was nothing more than a PR stunt. Absolutely nothing has changed in the film industry.

    • Tree says:

      Janice Dickinson wrote about a scene in Roman Polanski house/apartment
      that freaked her out.

      Her and Jack Nicholson walked in and she told him “no” grabbed his arm and walked out. I believe her.

  3. Sugarhere says:

    Polanski, Allen, Besson or the notorious pe👶👶👶c unholy trinity. Shivers down the spine.

  4. Amy Bee says:

    They just need Kevin Spacey to make an appearance now.

    • AlpineWitch says:

      I think he was there last year or the year before. They’ve always been slimey and they’d sell their own ‘nonna’ if it meant publicity of any kind.

      Same for Johnny D.

  5. Pointillist says:

    Besson is a paedophile.

  6. trillion says:

    Who cares when women are sexually abused? It’s been a non-issue since forever. Men generally DGAF unless it happens to a woman they subconsciously (or otherwise) consider their property, and therefore some kind of extension of themselves.

  7. Em says:

    I have seen people try to excuse what Roman Polanski has done by bringing up what happened to his wife, Sharon Tate. As if her murder traumatized him so much that whatever he did afterwards should be forgiven. It’s just insane! Where is the logic in that?

    • Tree says:

      Maybe if he would’ve done his jail time . They keep glossing over the fact that he refuses to go to jail. I hope the victim got a fortune. I really hope this “I forgive you” cost him like a million.

      • Em says:

        I agree.

        I think if he did his jail time he would be less repulsive to the public because at least he would have had the honor and courage to face the consequences of his actions. Literally the very least he could do. But honestly, drugging and raping a minor should have disqualified him from the industry forever regardless of whether or not he went to jail. The fact that he continues to be embraced by many around the world speaks volumes about how people view women and young girls.

        Also, what happened to Sharon Tate, the other Manson Family victims, and his family during the Holocaust DO NOT excuse what he has done to young girls. It doesn’t work like that. A tragic past is not a get out of jail free card. Nor should it be.

  8. Polly says:

    I wish people would stop using Polanski’s victim as a reason why we should all just forget about it and move on. There are a lot of complicated psychological reasons why a victim would forgive their rapist, and even more so in this particular case since it was so public. I can’t even begin to imagine how it must effect someone mentally to have loads of people openly supporting the man who drugged and raped you, even signing petitions in his favour, treating him like he’s the real victim. Of course that’s going to effect the way she sees things. These people ignore that and pretend like it’s not a factor and it makes me so angry.

    I would also add that an attack on one child is not just an attack on that particular child, it is an attack on all children. By doing what he did Polanski proved that he is a danger to children, for life. Men who abuse children don’t just do it one time and then stop. That’s something else these people know but pretend not to.

  9. Blarg says:

    It’s telling when the most “surprising” name on the list is…Ava DuVernay.

  10. Leah says:

    Seeing these men not only platformed, but celebrated really does make me think we’re living in the worst f*cking timeline.

    • Brassy Rebel says:

      Oh, believe me, it was even worse in old Hollywood. We wouldn’t even know they’re all rapists.

  11. Brassy Rebel says:

    I don’t know what happened with Besson, but WA has not been “absolved”. He just wasn’t prosecuted per the victim’s request. And Polanski was convicted then fled to France. What is this gaslighting mess?

  12. AJ says:

    They should just change the name of this festival to Perverts’R’Us