Roman Polanski is in production on new movie The Palace in Switzerland.
The drama, set on New Year’s Eve 1999 in a luxurious hotel, sees the lives of hotel workers and various guests intertwine.
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Filming was confirmed ten days ago by actor Mickey Rourke who is among cast for the project. The actor posted a photo to Instagram in which he said “End of the day, once again, a great pleasure to work with legendary and talented Roman Polanski. Working with such a director i feel is a great privilege his film has such integrity, style, class and unpredictability…Switzerland is a beautiful country.”
The project was first announced last year by Italian broadcaster Rai as part of their slate. Italian actor-producer Luca Barbareschi is lead producer via his Eliseo Entertainment company. CAB Productions is the Swiss co-producer. Script comes from Polanski and fellow Polish veteran Jerzy Skolimowski. The rest of the cast has yet to be confirmed.
We have been trying to get confirmation on whether the film will be on sale at the Cannes market for Rai or another sales firm. Multiple sources have told us they believe the film will be sold or co-produced by a French sales company, either at Cannes or further down the line. There is no mention of the project on the websites of Rai, Luca Barbareschi or CAB and none of the companies are responding to requests for updates.
Polanski, director of films including The Pianist, Chinatown and Rosemary’s Baby, remains a lightning rod for controversy in the industry and beyond. In 1977, the filmmaker was arrested and charged with drugging and raping a 13-year-old girl. He pleaded guilty at the time to the lesser charge of unlawful sex with a minor. Upon learning that the judge planned to reject his plea deal and impose a prison term instead of probation, he fled to Paris. As a result, Polanski is a fugitive from the U.S.
Despite his conviction and 2018 expulsion from the Academy in America, the Oscar winner has continued to work in Europe and garner awards. His latest film An Officer And A Spy won three César Awards in France and four prizes at the Venice Film Festival in 2020. However, multiple members of France’s César Academy resigned following an outcry over the film’s 12 nominations.
The big-budget drama achieved wide distribution in Europe and backing from multiple European companies, but no UK or U.S. distributor would pick the film up.
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