Natalie Portman says she regrets signing petition to free Roman Polanski nine years ago

PTI

February 21, 2018 19:31:37 IST

Los Angeles: Actor Natalie Portman regrets signing a letter demanding the release of Roman Polanski when he was arrested in Switzerland in 2009.

The Oscar-winner was among the high profiled Hollywood personalities, which also included Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen, and Emma Thompson, to sign the petition calling Polanski's release following his arrest and detention while in Switzerland at the request of US authorities in a case related to unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor in 1977.

Natalie Portman (L) and Roman Polanski (R). Reuters

Natalie Portman (L) and Roman Polanski (R). Reuters

"I very much regret it. I take responsibility for not thinking about it enough. Someone I respected gave it to me, and said, 'I signed this. Will you too?' And I was like, sure. It was a mistake," Portman told Buzzfeed.

"The thing I feel like I gained from it is empathy towards people who have made mistakes. We lived in a different world, and that doesn't excuse anything.

But you can have your eyes opened and completely change the way you want to live. My eyes were not open," she added.

The Annihilation actor, however, sidestepped questions about Woody Allen, who has been accused of sexual abuse by his step-daughter Dylan Farrow.

When asked whether the multiple Oscar-winning director's career is over in the wake of massive sexual harassment scandal, Portman said, "I don't think that's what the conversation should be about. I think it should be about: Why didn't Elaine May make a movie every year? Why didn't Nora Ephron make a movie every year? Where's the female version of Bill Cosby? Why don't we see any Asian women in films? There's so much art that's being lost by not giving opportunities to women and people of colour."

"Let's not talk about what man's career is over. Let's talk about the vast art trove we've lost by not giving women, people of colour, people with disabilities, and the LGBTQ+ community opportunities let's talk about that loss for all of us in art. Let's talk about that huge hole in our culture. I don't want talk about 'Isn't it sad that this person who's made 500 movies can't make movies anymore?' That's not for me to decide. And it's also not what I'm upset about," she added.

Updated Date: Feb 21, 2018 19:31 PM