Friday, April 19, 2024

Shock: Roman Polanski Victim’s Book: Unpublished Pictures, Graphic Details of Rape


I am surprised. For over a decade. Samantha Gailey Geimer has publicly supported director Roman Polanski and said that his rape of her, at age 13, was behind her. But in a book she’s publishing today, Geimer describes in detail the rape in 1977. The book also includes the photographs, never seen before, that Polanski took of her that day. The photos are placed in the book but not described until the Afterword, written by Geimer’s lawyer of 35 years, Lawrence Silver.

The photos illustrate the chapter, which I didn’t expect, in which Geimer responds the graphic details of what went on. Geimer says Polanski plied her with pills and Champagne. She worried that she would suffer the same fate as Karen Ann Quinlan. “What if I become the Coma Girl?” she thought.

There are three photos–two of them show Geimer looking woozy and stoned. In one she’s in a hot tub, her eyes shut. In the other, she’s looking back over her shoulder, arms crossed, on a window sill. The third is the sharpest– wearing a sexy dress, posing on a kitchen counter.

Polanski and Geimer, now high on Quaaludes, get into the hot tub. She writes: “It’s just me and him in the water and the steam and the bubbles. Then everything hits at once: the steam, the heat, the alcohol, the pill, and the panic. Have you ever been touched in a way that made you want to jump right out of your skin? This man had a reputation as a great lover. The problem is, he was not my great lover. I could have been any girl— as long as I was female, and as long as I was young. My chest tightens.”

I can’t reproduce the pictures here. and I can’t quote much more of the chapter– not just for copyright reasons, but because it would be too severe in this space.

Silver writes in his Afterword about the pictures in the book: “In the civil litigation, I demanded all photographs of Samantha. Polanski turned over the prints from that previously unseen first roll of film. But I believed there were more. What happened was this: In executing the search warrant, the police didn’t recognize the importance of a receipt/ claim check from Sav-On Drugs’
photograph department.

“Years later, I was told that Polanski gave his lawyer the receipt, and they secured the printed roll of film and negatives from the drug store. During the civil suit, his lawyer had to turn those photos over to me. These photographs, important both legally and historically, would likely have never been discovered if not for the civil suit.”

Geimer’s decision to publish now, and her details, aren’t exactly helpful to Polanski. She does acknowledge, however, that a lot of malfeasance went on with prosecuting him. Polanski served 42 days in jail. When he was released, it became clear that his original deal with the prosecution would be reneged on. That’s when he fled the United States.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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