Polański, Roman

(1933-)
   Internationally acclaimed film and theater director, screenwriter, actor, and film producer. Polański was born in Paris to a family of Polonized Jews who returned to Poland two years before World War II. He survived the war by escaping from the Kraków Ghetto and hiding in the Polish countryside (his mother died in a concentration camp). After the war, he studied at the Łódź Film School, graduating in 1957. His career started with a series of very well-received short films, including Two Men and a Wardrobe (Dwaj ludzie z szafą, 1958), When Angels Fall (Gdy spadają anioły, 1959), and Mammals (Ssaki, 1962). He was also acting in films, including Andrzej Wajda's A Generation (1955) and Innocent Sorcerers (1960) and Janusz Morgenstern's See You Tomorrow (1960). In 1962 Polański directed his first feature-length film, Knife in the Water (Nóz w wodzie), for which he received the first Polish nomination for an Academy Award in 1963. Following the criticism of his film by the Communist authorities, he left Poland.
   Polański's films made outside of Poland include works made in England, France, and the United States. For Repulsion (1965), starring Catherine Deneuve, he won the Special Award and the FIPRESCI award at the Berlin Film Festival. He won that festival the next year with a grotesque drama that he directed in England, Cul-de-sac. His first American film, an adaptation of Ira Levin's bestselling horror novel Rosemary's Baby (1968), starring Mia Farrow and John Cassavetes, brought him respect and popularity. In 1969, following the murder of his pregnant wife, actress Sharon Tate, he left the United States. In 1974 he returned to America to direct another classic Hollywood film, Chinatown, starring Jack Nicholson. After his conviction for statutory rape, he fled to France, where he directed a series of films, most of them with American involvement, for example The Tenant (Le locataire, 1976), Tess (1979), Frantic (1988), and The Ninth Gate (2000).
   Polanski's artistic output, because of its diversity, manipulation of generic rules, and cosmopolitan nature, is not easily defined. His films break conventional formulas, are characterized by the strong presence of an authorial self, exhibit Polanski's personal thematic obsessions, including prevailing images of the violent and the grotesque, and masterfully manipulate the viewer's emotions. In 2002 Polański returned to Poland to make The Pianist (Pianista), for which he won several awards, including the Academy Award for Best Director.
   Polanski's acting career, although often overshadowed by his directorial accomplishments, also deserves attention. He often acted in his own films, including performances in his first shorts Two Men and a Wardrobe and The Fat and the Lean (1961) and major roles in The Fearless Vampire Killers (1967) and The Tenant. He also acted in several films made by others, as in A Pure Formality (Una pura formalita, 1994, Giuseppe Tornatore), Dead Tired (Grosse fatigue, 1994, Michel Blanc), and Revenge (2002, Wajda). Several of Polanski's films received international acclaim, and the director was also honored with a number of awards at major film festivals, including lifetime achievement awards. Since 1991 Polański has been a member of the French Academy of Fine Arts. He also received several Polish honors, including an honorary doctorate from the Łódź Film School in 2000 and the Polish Film Award "Eagle" for Lifetime Achievement in 2003.
   Other Films: Macbeth (1971), What? (1972), Pirates (1986), Bitter Moon (1992), Death and the Maiden (1994), Oliver Twist (2005).
   See also Holocaust-Representation.
   Historical Dictionary of Polish Cinema by Marek Haltof

Guide to cinema. . 2011.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • POLANSKI, ROMAN — (Liebling; 1933– ), film director, writer, and actor. Born in Paris, Polanski went to Poland with his parents at the age of three. During World War II, he managed to escape the ghetto, while his parents were sent to a concentration camp, where… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Polanski, Roman — born Aug. 18, 1933, Paris, France Polish French film director. He grew up in Poland and survived a traumatic wartime childhood under the Nazis. His first feature film, Knife in the Water (1962), brought him international fame. He left Poland that …   Universalium

  • Polanski, Roman — (Raymond Polanski / August 18, 1933, Paris, France )    He was born to Polish Jewish parents who returned to Poland and settled in Cracow in 1936. In 1939, his family was arrested by the Nazis. His mother died in a concentration camp, and his… …   Encyclopedia of French film directors

  • Polanski, Roman — ► (n. 1933) Director cinematográfico polaco. Películas: Cul de Sac (1966), El baile de los vampiros (1967), La semilla del diablo (1968), La muerte y la doncella (1994), La novena puerta (1999) El pianista (2002), entre otras. * * * (n. 18 ago.… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Polanski, Roman — pseud. di Polanski, Raymond …   Sinonimi e Contrari. Terza edizione

  • Polanski, Roman —    см. Поланский, Роман …   Режиссерская энциклопедия. Кино США

  • Polanski — Polanski, Roman …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Roman Polański — Roman Polanski Pour les articles homonymes, voir Polanski. Roman Polański …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Roman Liebling — Roman Polański (* 18. August 1933 in Paris, Frankreich als Rajmund Roman Liebling) ist ein polnischer[1] Filmregisseur, Drehbuchautor und Schauspieler, der 1975 die französische Staatsbürgerschaft annahm.[2] …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Roman Polanski — Roman Polański (* 18. August 1933 in Paris, Frankreich als Rajmund Roman Liebling) ist ein polnischer[1] Filmregisseur, Drehbuchautor und Schauspieler, der 1975 die französische Staatsbürgerschaft annahm.[2] …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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