Andrew Holgate celebrates the highs — and highs — of this year’s festival
It was, by common consent, the best ever — eight days of literary cut and thrust where the sun shone, the magnolias bloomed, the crowds arrived in their tens of thousands, and the Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival came of age as of one the pre-eminent book events in Britain.
Spread over two weekends, from March 29 to April 5, the festival, seemingly occupying every corner of its expanded home at Christ Church, attracted 525 authors to more than 400 different events, in settings that ranged from the capacious — the main tent in the Master’s Garden — to the magnificent — the Great Hall in Tom Quad.
Kicking off proceedings in typically colourful style, David Starkey made the first of several confessions disclosed during the week when he admitted to hearing voices while writing: “A version of Joan of Arc, I suppose.” Robert Harris, talking about his recent political thriller The Ghost, revealed that his publishers had thought the book so close to the bone they hardly saw any point in reading it for libel, while the formidable psychologist Susie Orbach broke off from talking to Joan Bakewell about her book Bodies to confess to having a thing about George Clooney. “He’s gorgeous,” she purred, before suggesting that, according to the absurd BMI (body mass index) guidelines, he might probably be classified as obese.
Harris, who was in sparkling form during his interview, explained that he had heard that Tony Blair was “amused” by The Ghost’s portrait of a former prime minister and intrigued by the prospect of Pierce Brosnan playing the part in Roman Polanski’s forthcoming film. “At least it’s not Richard Wilson,” the former PM is reported to have said. Responding to claims in journalist Adam Boulton’s memoirs that Blair had referred to Harris as a “cheeky f***”, the author commented tartly, “I have no recollection of the event to which he referred.”
One of the highlights of the week, undoubtedly, was Ian McEwan’s conversation on the final morning with the Sunday Times fiction editor Peter Kemp. McEwan, following in the footsteps of Seamus Heaney, Anthony Burgess and Ted Hughes to collect the Sunday Times Award for Literary Excellence, was in expansive mood as he talked about his work, and was happy to quash the myth that has grown up about his time at the University of East Anglia, where he was supposedly the only student on the first year of Malcolm Bradbury’s famous creative writing course. “There was no course,” McEwan insisted, explaining that he met Bradbury only about three times for 10 minutes to hand over some short stories. “He never said anything . . . just thanks, and what’s the next one about.”
Elsewhere, less famous personalities got brief moments in the literary limelight. In his fascinating talk about his forthcoming biography of William Golding, John Carey mentioned a professional reader at Faber called Polly Perkins who judged Lord of the Flies to be “an absurd and uninteresting fantasy, rubbish and dull . . . Reject”. Jane Austen biographer Claire Harman remembered the obscure early 19th-century writer Mrs Dorset, famous in her time but now unread, who lives on in literary history only because of the fevered speculation in Austen’s lifetime that she might have written the anonymously authored Sense and Sensibility.
The festival crowds fed eagerly on the huge variety of subjects and authors presented during the week. In the children’s festival, it was standing-room only as Michael “War Horse” Morpurgo entertained 500 young and old readers with stories about his books. Politics received a healthy airing courtesy of the many events organised by the Orwell prize, not least in the packed civil-liberties debate featuring Shami Chakrabarti, the director of Liberty. Crowds flocked, too, to hear Richard Blair talk about his adoptive father George Orwell, and to the final of the Off by Heart children’s poetry-recital competition. Elsewhere, veteran writers such as AS Byatt and PD James, the latter in Oxford to collect from Melvyn Bragg the first Honorary Fellowship of the Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival, happily rubbed shoulders with younger fiction stars such as Man Booker-winner Aravind Adiga, Orange prize-winner Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and the Orange prize-shortlisted Sadie Jones, while Philip Pullman, William Fiennes, Frances Wilson and Aminatta Forna shared a stage with several children who read out their work as part of the commendable First Story initiative for creative writing in schools.
The festival had its fair share of grandeur, too. Mario Vargas Llosa, invited by the chancellor of the Univeristy of Oxford, Chris Patten, to give the first Chancellor’s Lecture in the Sheldonian Theatre, offered a magisterial talk on the origins of fiction, while Joan Bakewell and Paddy Ashdown kept diners hugely entertained during the black-tie closing dinner in the Great Hall.
And amid all the talk there was the quirky and the incongruous: Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, fresh from his lecture on Englishness, giving a sermon in Christ Church Cathedral at the same time as McEwan was proudly declaring his atheism less than 100 metres away; novelist Adam Mars-Jones being taught the rudiments of football’s offside rule by a fellow panellist in the main cafe; Bill Nighy wandering round the festival ahead of Diana Quick’s talk about her memoirs, happily chatting to anyone who stopped him.
Plans are already in hand for the 2010 festival at Christ Church, from March 20 to 28. Given the excitement around this year’s, this is one literary event you’d be mad to miss.
Cannes veteran Quentin Tarantino, whose "Pulp Fiction" won the top prize in 1994, returns to the festival with this long-awaited WWII-era action film. Starring Brad Pitt, the film is about a group of Jewish-American soldiers who, together with an undercover female agent, set out on a mission to take down the leaders of the Third Reich. The Weinstein Co., which could use a big hit, will release the film in the U.S. later this summer.
"The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus"
Almost abandoned after the sudden death of its star, Heath Ledger, this fantastical story about a traveling magic show in modern London was eventually completed after actors Johnny Depp, Colin Farrell and Jude Law stepped in to complete Mr. Ledger's unfinished scenes. It is directed by Terry Gilliam ("Brazil"), and still awaiting a U.S. distributor.
In this historical drama, set in ancient Egypt, Oscar-winner Rachel Weisz plays astrologer-philosopher Hypatia of Alexandria, who fights to save the collected wisdom of the ancient world. Financed almost entirely by Spanish media company Telecinco, and directed by Alejandro Amenabar (whose previous film "The Sea Inside" won the 2005 Best Foreign-Language Academy Award) the big-budget epic will be looking for big sales, including a U.S. home.
Oscar-winning director Roman Polanski's latest stars Pierce Brosnan as a former British prime minister who's holed up on an island writing his memoirs. When his collaborator drowns in an apparent accident, political and sexual intrigue follows. Based on Robert Harris' bestseller, the unfinished film comes to the Cannes market aiming to close a deal for U.S. distribution.
This highly-anticipated psychological horror film, directed by Danish provocateur Lars von Trier ("Breaking the Waves"), stars Willem Dafoe and French actress Charlotte Gainsbourg as a couple mourning the loss of their child. They go to a cabin in the woods to repair their broken hearts.
Oscar-winning Australian director Jane Campion ("The Piano") directs this drama based on the three-year romance between 19th-century poet John Keats and Fanny Brawne which was cut short by Keats' untimely death at age 25. The film, starring rising stars Ben Whishaw and Abbie Cornish, is already rumored to have an offer from a new U.S. distribution company to be announced this week in Cannes.
Roman Polanski arrest puts latest film on hold; 'Ghost' stars Pierce Brosnan, Ewan McGregor September, 28, 2009 - 09:44 pm Germain, David - (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)
LOS ANGELES - Roman Polanski's arrest in Switzerland has left his latest film in limbo, with several months of work before the political thriller is ready for theatres.
Polanski's agent, International Creative Management chief Jeff Berg, said Polanski had completed much of the editing on "The Ghost." But other post-production work, including music scoring and sound mixing, had yet to be done, Berg said.
Based on the provocative novel by Robert Harris, "The Ghost" stars Pierce Brosnan as fictional former British leader Adam Lang and Ewan McGregor as a ghostwriter hired to help complete his memoirs. The cast includes Kim Cattrall, Tom Wilkinson, Olivia Williams and James Belushi.
The novel caused a stir in Britain for Lang's resemblance to former Prime Minister Tony Blair. Like Blair, Lang is a once-popular leader brought down by his allegiance with the United States in the war on terror.
While the film does not yet have a U.S. deal, it has distribution in many overseas territories, among them Germany, where it was shot early this year, and France, where Polanski lives. He fled America in 1978 after pleading guilty to having unlawful sexual intercourse with a 13-year-old girl in Los Angeles.
Polanski was arrested over the weekend in Zurich, where he had travelled to receive a lifetime achievement award from a film festival. His lawyer said Polanski will fight U.S. attempts to have him returned to the United States.
"The Ghost" is the first Polanski movie with a U.S. setting since 1974's "Chinatown." Locations in Germany had to stand in for the story's New England settings.
"There's a lot of psychological intrigue in the story, as well as espionage and politics, and most of the action takes place in an oceanfront house during the middle of winter - all of it classic Polanski territory," Harris said when the film was announced in 2007.
Berg said Polanski usually finishes his films before lining up U.S. distribution, so the completed movie can be shopped around.
"There is always interest in movies that Roman distributes," Berg said. "It should be accepted on its own merits, but we feel highly confident we'll find proper distribution."
Polanski's films include the horror hit "Rosemary's Baby," the costume drama "Tess" and the Holocaust saga "The Pianist," which earned him the 2002 Academy Award for best director.
A Holocaust survivor himself, Polanski has endured other dire trauma, including the murder of his pregnant wife, actress Sharon Tate, by followers of cult figure Charles Manson in 1969.
With Polanski jailed, it's unknown when work might resume on "The Ghost." Berg said he is confident Polanski will put his legal troubles behind him and finish the film.
"I'm always optimistic when it comes to Roman," Berg said. "He's strong, and he has survived every situation imaginable."
Studio Babelsberg demands the immediate release of Roman Polanski and cancels attendance at Zurich Film Festival
Potsdam Babelsberg, Tuesday 29. September 2009 Studio Babelsberg demands the immediate release of Roman Polanski and supports the petition of Cannes Festival’s General Delegate Thierry Frémaux and film producer Harvey Weinstein against the US extradition of the director Roman Polanski, arrested in Switzerland. Studio Babelsberg co-produced Roman Polanski’s Oscar winning film The Pianist as well as his latest project The Ghost starring Pierce Brosnan and Ewan McGregor. Both films were shot almost completely in Germany.
Christoph Fisser, COO Studio Babelsberg and co-producer of The Ghost: „Roman Polanski is one of the world’s most renowned directors. We are dismayed by the way a public cultural event is used for a police operation of that kind. The authorities have to find a solution as soon as possible.”
To protest against the arrest, Henning Molfenter, Managing Director of Studio Babelsberg Motion Pictures and co-producer of The Pianist and The Ghost, cancelled his attendance as a jury member at the Zurich Film Festival. “There is no way I’d go to Switzerland – I can’t imagine watching films knowing that at the same time the famous director Roman Polanski is sitting in a prison in the same city”, Molfenter said.
R.P. Productions, the film company run by Roman Polanski, has confirmed to MovieScore Magazine that French composer Alexandre Desplat is doing the original score for Polanski’s new film, The Ghost. The film is currently in post-production, but it remains unclear if the film will be delayed or not as a result of the recent arrest of Polanski in Switzerland. According to various sources, Desplat is among the individuals who signed a petition organized by Société des Auteurs et Compositeurs Dramatiques to set the famous 76-year old director free (Polanski is imprisoned in Switzerland on a 31-year-old U.S. charge of child rape).
The Ghost is based on the Robert Harris novel about a ghostwriter who uncovers some deadly secrets when he’s writing the memoirs of a former British prime minister. The cast includes Ewan McGregor, Pierce Brosnan and Kim Cattrall.
Desplat is one of the busiest international film composers at the moment and is a hot name among auteur filmmakers: apart from Polanski, he’s writing music for Terrence Malick’s new film The Tree of Life and he recently worked for such esteemed directors as David Fincher (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button), Robert Guédiguian (The Army of Crime), Stephen Frears (Chéri) and Ang Lee (Lust, Caution). Among his other upcoming films are the animated The Fantastic Mr. Fox and the first Twilight sequel, The Twilight Saga: New Moon.
The Times: Polanski is finishing latest film from his cell, says Robert Harris
October 14, 2009
Roman Polanski is putting the finishing touches to his forthcoming film from his prison cell in Switzerland, his friend and colleague Robert Harris said yesterday at The Times Cheltenham Literature Festival.
Harris, who wrote the screenplay for the film, said that the director is making decisions about The Ghost so that it will be ready for its scheduled premiere at the Berlin Film Festival in February. Polanski, who is fighting extradition to America where he is wanted for raping a 13-year-old girl in 1977, recently gave instructions about the film score to Alexandre Desplat, the composer best known for writing music for The Queen and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
The director, 76, was arrested in Zurich on September 26 after 31 years on the run from the American authorities. He admitted having sex with Samantha Gailey, a model he hired for a photoshoot, but jumped bail in February 1978 when he discovered that he would face a lengthy prison sentence despite negotiating a plea bargain. Harris, who was in Cheltenham to publicise his book Lustrum, said that The Ghost would be completed in accordance with Polanski’s wishes. The director had finished editing the film, which stars Pierce Brosnan as a British prime minister accused of war crimes, on the day of his arrest.
Harris said: “He can make his wishes known from his cell. I don’t think he can make phone calls, but he can communicate. What people think of the film is another matter. Whether the film can rise above the circumstances in which the director now finds himself I don’t know. We will test to the upper limits the notion that there’s no such thing as bad publicity.”
Polanski’s arrest has divided public opinion. Most American commentators have welcomed the opportunity to bring him to justice, but there was an outcry in France, where he has lived without fear of extradition because of his French citizenship.
President Sarkozy said that he hoped for a “speedy resolution”.
Harris said that he does not condone Polanski’s crime, but believes that the story is more complicated than some commentators have described it. Polanski pleaded guilty to unlawful sexual intercourse in a deal with prosecutors in exchange for them dropping charges of rape, drugging and sodomy, which would have carried a life sentence. But he fled America when he discovered that he would still serve time in prison.
Harris, who is best known for historical novels such as Fatherland and Imperium, said: “He was left with little choice but to flee. I’ve got to know him very well. He’s got to know my children. I know his children. He has effectively been on probation for 32 years. For this to happen to him now . . . it seems to me to be bad treatment, especially as the victim herself says that she doesn’t want him to be pursued any further.”
He said that he did not worry about being tainted by association with Polanski and only hoped that his friend would be allowed to fight extradition from outside prison so he can see his family.
The author said:“These proceedings do drag on for the best part of a year. He’s a tough man. He’s been through a lot. If anyone can survive it, he can.”
Polanski’s life has been beset by tragedy. His mother was killed in Auschwitz, and in 1969 his pregnant wife, Sharon Tate, was murdered by the Manson Family.
Harris said that Polanski wanted the film to be completed even if he is in prison. It is a nightmare looming that the director might be in jail at the time [of the film’s release] but we will just have to cope with this as the situation develops. I’m sure he would want the film to go ahead, having worked on it for two years.”
FRANKFURT, Germany (Hollywood Reporter) - Director Roman Polanski is continuing to work on his new film "The Ghost" from his jail cell in Switzerland and expects to deliver it on time before the end of the year.
"The film will be finished," Henning Molfenter, head of production at Studio Babelsberg and a co-producer on "The Ghost," told The Hollywood Reporter. "We will meet all our deadlines and all of our obligations with distributors."
Polanski had already delivered a rough cut of the film -- an adaptation of the Robert Harris best-seller, a political thriller -- before his September arrest in Zurich on a decades-old sex charge. Post-production has continued as the director continues to fight extradition to the United States. While Polanski's contact with the outside world is limited, it is believed he is being kept up to date with developments and is able to communicate via telephone with editor Herve du Luze and others involved with the project.
In an interview with The Times newspaper in London, author Harris said Polanski wants to finish "The Ghost" in time for a planned premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival in February.
Molfenter would only confirm that the producers are "in regular contact" with Berlin fest officials.
"We are aware of the film and we look forward to seeing the finished product," said the Berlin Festival's head of press, Frauke Greiner.
It remains to be seen whether the publicity tsunami that has surrounded Polanski's arrest will help or hurt the film.
"The Ghost" is the story of a former British Prime Minister, played by Pierce Brosnan, who is accused of war crimes. Ewan McGregor plays a ghostwriter who uncovers his dark secret after he is hired to complete the Prime Minister's memoirs.
"Whether the film can rise above the circumstances in which (Polanski) now finds himself, I don't know," Harris told The Times. "We will test to the upper limits the notion that there's no such thing as bad publicity."
Swiss authorities arrested Polanski, 76, on a U.S. warrant stemming from his 1977 charge of having unlawful sex with a 13-year-old girl. The director fled the U.S. in 1978, fearing the judge was going to toss out a plea bargain and send him to prison for up to 50 years. He has remained in France ever since, refusing even to fly to Los Angeles to receive his best director Oscar for "The Pianist" in 2003.
His imprisonment has inflamed passions on both sides of the Atlantic. Several prominent political and film industry figures, including French Culture Minister Frederic Mitterrand, Weinstein Co. boss Harvey Weinstein and Cannes Festival director Thierry Fremaux have called for Polanski's immediate release while many pundits and commentators around the world are demanding that he be sent back to the U.S. to face trial.
Since Kevin Costner rescued her acting career, Olivia Williams has adopted a unique approach to her craft. And with a Polanski film in the can, a leading role in Joss 'Buffy' Whedon's new TV series and a winning turn in 'An Education', it seems to be paying dividends
By Gerard Gilbert
Sunday, 15 November 2009
A woman of classical, slightly austere beauty that belies her personal warmth, Williams was bought up in London's Camden Town by the aforementioned barristers, studied English literature at Newnham College, Cambridge, before joining the Bristol Old Vic and spending three years at the Royal Shakespeare Company. Her first major role in front of the cameras, as Jane Fairfax in a 1996 TV version of Jane Austen's Emma, seemed to point to a theatrical career interspaced with polite TV costume dramas. But then came the fateful intervention of Kevin Costner, and her life since then has been mainly in the peripatetic world of movie-making.
"I've made nearly 30 films in all, I think," she says. But like so many big-screen actresses, she has now realised that television – American TV in particular – is providing many of the more rewarding roles. "That's where the good writers are going. Plus, having a profile on telly is, well... for example I've just made an extremely intellectually and artistically high-powered film with Kim Cattrall as the female lead...", she says, trailing off, the unspoken implication being that Cattrall owes her current prominence to TV's Sex and the City rather than any movie she has made during the past 20 years.
That "extremely intellectually and artistically high-powered film" was Roman Polanski's adaptation of the Robert Harris thriller The Ghost, a roman-a-clef in which a recently retired British prime minister – a thinly disguised Tony Blair – has his memoirs written by a ghost-writer, who comes to fear for his life.
Williams plays the Cherie Blair figure ("if you want to go down that route", she says) married to Pierce Brosnan's former British PM. "Polanski is very funny and completely intense and hyper... not at all a remote figure. What you understand when you get closer to him is that he's seen it all in his head and he's just trying to make it happen in front of the camera. It takes some time to get used to that way of working but I ended up very fond of him."
Post by Myrtle Groggins on Nov 25, 2009 3:38:07 GMT -5
Thanks for the information. I usually avoid Polanski's work if I can help it. Although the premise sounds interesting, and I love PB, I may have to pass on this one unless it's shown on network "free" TV where I won't give him any ratings because I get broadcast TV through rabbit ears only. ;D
Obviously the writer has a somewhat larger part than the ghostly prime minister. That's usually how it works.
Polanski still in jail; 'Ghost' on track German distributor to release it during Berlin film festival
By Scott Roxborough
Dec 1, 2009
COLOGNE, Germany -- Roman Polanski will remain in a Swiss jail until at least Friday while authorities await his $4.5 million bail payment. But the director's latest film, "The Ghost," looks set to travel to the Berlin International Film Festival in February.
On Tuesday, German distributor Kinowelt announced it would release "The Ghost" on Feb.18, 2010 -- in the middle of the Berlin fest, which is set for Feb. 11-21.
Kinowelt declined comment, but sources close to the production confirmed "The Ghost" would premiere at the 60th Berlin festival. The official festival debut is likely to come in the first week -- ahead of the national rollout Feb. 18. It is unclear whether "The Ghost" will run in competition in Berlin or as a special gala screening, though insiders suggest the latter.
The Berlin festival could not be reached for comment Tuesday, but organizers rarely comment on Berlin's lineup outside of official press conferences.
The February release date suggests Polanski is all but finished with the film, which he continued to work on despite his arrest in Zurich in September. Swiss police arrested the Oscar-winning director on a U.S. warrant stemming from his 1977 charge of having unlawful sex with a 13 year-old girl. The Swiss Justice Ministry last week agreed to release Polanksi to house arrest at his chalet in the Swiss ski resort of Gstaad but he still faces possible extradition to the U.S.
In an ironic twist, the plot of "The Ghost" is also that of a man whose past comes back to haunt him. Based on the Robert Harris' bestseller, "The Ghost" stars Pierce Brosnan as a former British Prime Minister who is accused of war crimes. Ewen McGregor plays the man hired to ghostwrite his memoirs, who begins to uncover some dark secrets. Kim Cattrall, Olivia Williams, James Belushi and Tom Wilkinson also star. The film was shot mainly at Studio Babelsberg outside Berlin.
It's unlikely that Polanski will make it to the red carpet, however. At the moment, he remains in jail. Swiss authorities on Tuesday said they had not yet received the $4.5 million bail deposit from Polanski and had not set up the electronic monitoring at his chalet that are the conditions of his release. A spokesman for the Justice Department said Polanski would not be released before Friday at the earliest.
The world's media is camped out in Gstaad waiting for Polanski's arrival. Under the conditions of his bail, Polanski will have to wear an electronic monitoring bracelet at all times and will not be allowed to leave his property. However, he will be able to move freely within the house and grounds and will be able to receive guests.
Polanski is fighting extradition to face U.S. sentencing over the 1977 sex case. The Swiss Justice Department is expected to decide on possible extradition within weeks but if Polanski appeals, the case could drag on for months. The 76-year-old director faces up to two years in prison if convicted.
SUMMIT ENTERTAINMENT TO DISTRIBUTE OSCAR®- WINNING FILMMAKER ROMAN POLANSKI’S NEXT THRILLER- THE GHOST WRITER IN NORTH AMERICA
LOS ANGELES, CA – December 11, 2009 — Summit Entertainment announced today that the studio will distribute the thriller THE GHOST WRITER, directed by Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Roman Polanski, in North America. Polanski produced the film along with long time collaborators Robert Benmussa and Alain Sarde. Summit International, which has a long-standing relationship with Polanski representing the sales of the rights to his films outside of North America, acted as sales agent for THE GHOST WRITER. Sales have been made in all major territories around the globe. The North American rights to the film were represented by ICM. Current plans call for Summit to release the film during the first half of 2010.
The movie thriller tells the story of a former British Prime Minister, Adam Lang (Pierce Brosnan), who is holed up on an island off the Eastern seaboard of the U.S. in midwinter, writing his memoirs. When his long-standing aide drowns, a professional ghostwriter (Ewan McGregor) is sent out to help him finish the book. The anonymous ghost writer is quickly drawn into a political and sexual intrigue involving Lang’s wife, Ruth (Olivia Williams) and his aide (Kim Cattrall). Hanging over Lang is the threat of a war crimes trial and a mysterious secret from his past that threatens to jeopardize international relations. The cast also includes Jim Belushi, Robert Pugh and Tom Wilkinson. Alexandre Desplat scored the film.
THE GHOST WRITER is based on the novel The Ghost written by best-selling author Robert Harris. It won the International Thriller Writers’ Award for best novel of 2008. Harris joined Polanski in adapting the book for the big screen.
In a joint statement, Summit Entertainment Co-Chairmen Rob Friedman and Patrick Wachsberger said, “We had the good fortune to recently screen THE GHOST WRITER in Paris and were amazed at the film Roman and his team have created. He once again has proven himself as one of the world’s most talented filmmakers and master of suspense creating a very modern thriller and we look forward to sharing this film with North American audiences.”
The production is set up as a French-German-UK co-production between RP Films (F) 11, Babelsberg Film (Ger) and Runteam III (UK). Henning Molfenter, Carl L. Woebcken and Christoph Fisser (Studio Babelsberg) co-produced the film along with Timothy Burrill (Runteam).
Polanski, Cattrall, Williams and Belushi are represented by ICM.
Additional Information Roman Polanski, the Academy Award®-winning director of THE PIANIST (2002) received his first Oscar® nomination for his 1964 film KNIFE IN THE WATER. Another Oscar nomination followed for the screenplay adaptation of the 1968 psychological thriller ROSEMARY'S BABY. Polanski was again nominated for Best Director in 1974 for CHINATOWN and once more in 1979 for TESS. To date he has directed 17 features in addition to several productions of live theatre.
British writer Robert Harris is the author of Fatherland (1992), a New York Times bestseller which imagined that Germany won World War II, subsequently made into an HBO movie starring Rutger Hauer and Miranda Richardson. His second novel Enigma (1995) about the breaking of the German Enigma code, was turned into a film starring Kate Winslet with a screenplay by Tom Stoppard. Archangel (1998) became a BBC mini-series in 2005, starring Daniel Craig. In 2003, Harris turned his attention towards Ancient Rome with his acclaimed Pompeii. He followed this with Imperium (2006), the first of a trilogy of novels about the life of Rome's great orator, Cicero.
About Summit Entertainment, LLC Summit Entertainment, LLC is a worldwide theatrical motion picture development, financing, production and distribution studio. The studio handles all aspects of marketing and distribution for both its own internally developed motion pictures as well as acquired pictures. Summit Entertainment, LLC also represents international sales for both its own slate and third party product. Summit Entertainment, LLC plans to release 10 to 12 films annually.
Former James Bond star Pierce Brosnan is calling for closure on Roman Polanski's 32-year-old child sex case.
The moviemaker, who is currently under house arrest in Switzerland, has been living in exile in Europe since fleeing to France on the eve of sentencing in 1978 after he pleaded guilty to having sex with a 13-year-old girl at a Hollywood party in 1977.
His attorneys made another attempt to have the criminal case dismissed on Thursday (10Dec09), telling a three-judge California appeals court that Polanski's treatment by the state's justice system is "a really remarkable, astonishing record of misconduct."
And Brosnan, who appears in Polanski's upcoming film The Ghost, is backing calls for the case to be closed in a speedy manner, so the director can move on with his life.
He says, "There's a sadness to the whole situation. What happened was wrong in every way, but I just wish the man well and closure for this time in his life, at this moment in time. He's a magnificent director. He's iconic in the world of cinema. I think we've made a good film, the cast is really top class and I just hope that justice will be served with some dignity and compassion, and swiftly.
"We had dinners, we talked, I met him before and we got on very well together, but I don't know the man. I certainly knew the history of the man, and my heart goes out to his family, to his wife and to his children, and, as I say, I hope this chapter can be closed quickly."
The judges in California are expected to make a decision whether to dismiss the case within 90 days.
Polanski, who was arrested in Zurich in September (09), will be held in Switzerland while officials in the country decide whether to extradite him to the U.S.