LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess) — Noted director and fugitive Roman Polanski has sued the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, claiming the organization unfairly expelled him last year and seeking to be reinstated.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Polanski’s attorney Harland Braun filed a petition on Friday asking a Los Angeles judge to force the Academy to reinstate Polanski as a member in good standing.
Braun argued that while the Academy offered Polanski a chance to appeal his expulsion, it failed to provide him an opportunity to defend himself, violating its own rules.
The Academy expelled Polanski in 2018, along with disgraced comedian Bill Cosby as part of a review of the Academy’s standards in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, THR reported.
The Academy maintains that Polanksi’s expulsion was handled properly and in a statement to Variety, a rep for the organization said: “The procedures taken to expel Mr. Polanski were fair and reasonable. The Academy stands behind its decision as appropriate.”
Polanski, who directed cinema classics such as Rosemary’s Baby, Chinatown, and The Pianist, was arrested in Los Angeles 1977 and charged six criminal counts, including rape, in connection with the alleged sexual assault of 13-year-old Samantha Gailey.
As a result of a plea bargain, Polanski pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor and was ordered to undergo psychiatric evaluation but fled the country before sentencing, reportedly concerned that the judge presiding over the case would not honor the terms of the plea agreement.
Polanski, who has been living primarily in France and Poland according to reports, was arrested in 2009 in Zurich at the request of US authorities and was placed under house arrest for several months before an extradition request was rejected by Swiss authorities.