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|Also Known As:||Romek Polanski,Raimund Polanski,Rajmund Roman Liebling||Died:|
|Born:||August 18, 1933||Cause of Death:|
|Birth Place:||Paris, FR||Profession:||Cast ... director screenwriter producer actor editor author|
Perhaps one of the most notorious directors in Hollywood, Roman Polanski was as known for his tumultuous personal life as he was for his dark, disquieting and quasi-autobiographical films. After a childhood stained by Nazi atrocities, Polanski emerged from his native Poland with the Oscar-nominated "Knife in the Water" (1962). He went on to establish a reputation with several films shot in England - namely the claustrophobic sexual thriller "Repulsion" (1965) - before reaching artistic and commercial heights in America with "Rosemary's Baby" (1968). But his newfound success quickly descended into tragedy in 1969 when several of his friends and his pregnant wife, actress Sharon Tate, were brutally murdered by members of Charles Manson's "Family." After directing the landmark film noir, "Chinatown" (1974), Polanski became a victim of his own excesses when he fled the United States to avoid serving prison time following a conviction for statutory rape. As a fugitive, Polanski continued making films, albeit with less frequency and smaller budgets. But he found himself on top again when he tapped into his own experiences for the Oscar-winning Holocaust drama, "The Pianist" (2002). As an artist who exerted tremendous control - often co-writing screenplays and sometimes acting - Polanski instilled his films with a uniquely personal worldview. His recurring themes of violence and victimization, isolation and alienation, and a profound sense of the absurd, permeated a body of work that long remained unmatched by many a director before and since.
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