The iconic and controversial French-Polish director Roman Polanski is about to bring The Dreyfus Affair, one of the most famous cases of anti-Semitism in modern times, to the big screen.
Polanski says this is a project he’s wanted to do for quite a while, and he intends to show “its absolute relevance to what is happening in today’s world – the age-old spectacle of the witch-hunt of a minority group, security paranoia, secret military tribunals, out-of-control intelligence agencies, governmental cover-ups and a rabid press.”
The Dreyfus Affair refers to the case of Captain Albert Dreyfus, who served in the French army during the late 19th century, but was stripped of his rank and imprisoned after widely held anti-Semitic views within France’s government and military at the time led to Dreyfus being framed for the crime of treason, which he did not commit.
Dreyfus was released from prison 4 years later after it became clear he was innocent, which led to his decision to re-enlist in the French army and fight during World War I.
Polanski fled the United States in 1978 after he was convicted of having sex with an underage girl, and although he was arrested in Switzerland in 2007, Swiss authorities denied a U.S. request for extradition.