Roman Polanski admits the girl he raped was his “victim”

Roman Polanski Nearly 35 years after the fact, Roman Polanski, finally concedes that drugging and raping a 13-year old girl was a mistake.

In a new documentary, Roman Polanski: A Film Memoir, that premiered at the Zurich Film Festival this week, the award-winning director and bail-jumping fugitive apologized to Samantha Greimer, the woman he raped back in 1977: “She is a double victim: My victim, and a victim of the press.”

Ok, sure. Definitely true that Greimer was a victim of the press–as every woman who accuses a powerful man of rape is. In fact, she was so traumatized by the media attention that hounded her once she pressed charges against Polanski that she eventually just wanted the whole thing to go away. When Polanski was arrested in Switzerland two years ago, she said she was relieved that he ultimately wasn’t extradited back the U.S.

But I’m with Gabe: Leave the media out of it, dude. The nightmare she experienced in the court system and media circus started with you. You and your actions. And as your first public apology in decades–after fleeing the country before sentencing to avoid justice, claiming the charges were trumped up because “everyone wants to fuck young girls,” and generally acting as though somehow you’re the real victim here–it should be, well, a lot better.

Image credit: Reuters

St. Paul, MN

Maya Dusenbery is executive director in charge of editorial at Feministing. She is the author of the forthcoming book Doing Harm: The Truth About How Bad Medicine and Lazy Science Leave Women Dismissed, Misdiagnosed, and Sick (HarperOne, March 2018). She has been a fellow at Mother Jones magazine and a columnist at Pacific Standard magazine. Her work has appeared in publications like,, Bitch Magazine, as well as the anthology The Feminist Utopia Project. Before become a full-time journalist, she worked at the National Institute for Reproductive Health. A Minnesota native, she received her B.A. from Carleton College in 2008. After living in Brooklyn, Oakland, and Atlanta, she is currently based in the Twin Cities.

Maya Dusenbery is an executive director of Feministing and author of the forthcoming book Doing Harm on sexism in medicine.

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