Roman Polanski Sends Supporters His House-Arrested Holiday Regards


With his usual, door-to-door caroling routine scuttled by the virtual ball and chain of chatel-arrest, Roman Polanski instead chose the holiday-card route to get his warmest season's greetings to beleaguered supporters around the world. It helped if you spoke French, as it came in the form of a letter to noted intellectual and pro-Polanski firebrand Bernard-Henri Lévy. But just in case, a translation follows the jump.

Lévy published Polanski's note at the filmmaker's suggestion, posting the letter on his Web site La Règle du jeu. While expressing his gratitude for the many notes of support he'd received during two months in detention, Polanski expressed an equal inability to respond to his backers; "there are too many," the filmmaker wrote to Levy, and hey, it's not like Polanski doesn't have a film to finish before February.

So Lévy complied, and it went a little something like this:

My dear Bernard-Henri Lévy, what you have said in the Swiss press is true -- I have been overwhelmed by the number of messages of support and sympathy I have received in Winterthur prison, and that I continue to receive here, in my chalet in Gstaad, where I am spending the holidays with my wife and my children.

These messages have come from my neighbours, from people all over Switzerland, and from beyond Switzerland - from across the world. I would like every one of them to know how heartening it is, when one is locked up in a cell, to hear this murmur of human voices and of solidarity in the morning mail. In the darkest moments, each of their notes has been a source of comfort and hope, and they continue to be so in my current situation.

I would like to be able to answer all of them. But it is impossible: there are too many. Do you have any suggestions as to how I could reply? Perhaps in your journal, La Règle du jeu, which has supported me from the very first day? Perhaps you could disseminate these few words I'm sending you? I don't know. I'll leave it up to you.

Happy holidays to you and yours -- and, through you, to all of these unknown friends whom I am discovering day after day, and who have helped me so much.

My warmest regards

Roman Polanski

Thanks, Roman! Feel free to reply with your own regards at the site's comments section. It's a quiet spot currently, but judging how these things usually go, it should be quite the festive, familial dogma epicenter by lunchtime.

· Roman Polanski's letter to Bernard-Henri Lévy [La Règle du jeu]