Roman Polanski

Roman Polanski

Highest Rated: 100% Spine Tingler: The William Castle Story (2007)

Lowest Rated: 17% Diary of Forbidden Dreams (1973)

Birthday: Aug 18, 1933

Birthplace: Paris, France

Thanks to his darkly unique perspective and grim, often nihilistic approach to storytelling, director Roman Polanski has left an indelible mark on world cinema. Although his films have been compared to those of Alfred Hitchcock, with their use of gallows humor, tension, and occasional surrealism to tell amoral stories of ordinary men struggling to cope in a hostile, ironic world, Polanski, unlike Hitchcock, has chosen to experiment with a variety of genres. In this regard, the director has considered himself a "cinematic playboy" intent on exploring the possibilities of all film categories. A uniformly pessimistic viewpoint provides the clearest link to entries in Polanski's body of work, something that is widely traced back to years of childhood trauma.The son of a Polish Jew and a Russian immigrant, Polanski was born in Paris on August 18, 1933. When he was three, his family moved to the Polish town of Krakow, an unfortunate decision given that the Germans invaded the city in 1940. Things went from bad to worse with the formation of Krakow's Jewish ghetto, and Polanski's family was the target of further persecution when his parents were deported to a concentration camp. Just before he was to be taken away, however, Polanski's father helped his son escape, and the boy managed to survive with help from kindly Catholic families, although he was at times forced to fend for himself. (At one point, the Germans decided to use Polanski for idle target practice.) It was during this period that Polanski became a devoted cinephile, seeking refuge in movie houses whenever possible. The cinemas provided him a type of protection that was brutally absent in the outside world. Shortly after sustaining serious injuries in an explosion, Polanski learned of his mother's death at Auschwitz. His father survived the camps, and moved back to Krakow with his son. Following his father's remarriage, the adolescent Polanski left home. Although still coping with great personal turmoil, he managed to nurture his love of the cinema; two films that particularly influenced him at the time were Laurence Olivier's Hamlet and Carol Reed's Odd Man Out. Following a near-fatal incident at the age of 16 -- which involved Polanski nearly becoming the next victim of a man who had just killed three people -- his father enrolled him in a technical school. He left in 1950 to attend film school, concurrently becoming an actor with the Krakow Theater and made his onscreen acting debut in Andrzej Wajda's 1954 Pokolenie/A Generation.That same year, Polanski was one of six applicants accepted into the rigorous director's course at Lodz's prestigious State Film School. In 1957, he made his first student film Rozbijemy Zabawe/Break up the Dance, an account of paid thugs destroying a school party (a stunt that almost got him expelled). Polanski's next film, Dwaj Ludzie z Szafa/Two Men and a Wardrobe, proved to be one of his most famous, winning him five international awards. This and subsequent shorts such as Le Gros et le Maigre/The Fat and the Lean (made in 1961 after his graduation) all featured the black humor that would characterize his later features. Polanski made his feature film debut in 1962 with Noz w Wodzie/Knife in the Water; as with most of his subsequent features, he also worked on the screenplay, in this case collaborating with Jerzy Skolimowski and Jakub Goldberg. A suspenseful, symbolic psychological drama set aboard a sailboat, the film told the story of a husband's misbegotten attempts to impress his wife and a potential rival, a young hitchhiker they bring aboard on a whim. It is considered the first Polish film not to deal with World War II, and was applauded for its visual precision (another characteristic of Polanski's work). It was also the only full-length feature the director made in Poland.Polanski moved to England to make his next two films, the first of which, Repulsion, became a cornerstone of contemporary psychological thrillers and, despite po


Highest Rated Movies



77% An Officer and a Spy (J'accuse) Screenwriter Director 2019
46% Based on a True Story (D'après une histoire vraie) Screenwriter Director 2017
88% Venus in Fur Director Screenwriter $0.2M 2014
73% Weekend Of A Champion Director Producer Actor 2013
91% Roman Polanski: A Film Memoir Actor 2013
84% Seduced And Abandoned Actor 2013
No Score Yet Komeda: A Soundtrack for a Life Actor 2012
71% Carnage Director Screenwriter $2.3M 2011
No Score Yet Dance of the Vampires Actor Screenwriter Director 2011
84% The Ghost Writer Director Producer Screenwriter $11.1M 2010
78% Caos Calmo (Quiet Chaos) Steiner 2009
85% Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired Actor 2008
100% Spine Tingler: The William Castle Story Actor 2007
18% Rush Hour 3 Detective Revi $140.1M 2007
61% Oliver Twist Producer Director $2M 2005
95% The Pianist Producer Director $32.6M 2002
No Score Yet Zemsta Papkin 2002
91% The Kid Stays in the Picture Actor $1.4M 2002
No Score Yet Revenge Actor 2002
83% Light Keeps Me Company Actor 2001
43% The Ninth Gate Screenwriter Producer Director 1999
50% Dead Tired (Grosse Fatigue) Himself 1995
82% Death and the Maiden Director 1995
80% A Pure Formality Inspector 1994
No Score Yet Back in the U.S.S.R. Kurilov 1992
65% Bitter Moon Screenwriter Producer Director 1992
76% Frantic Director Screenwriter 1988
30% Pirates Screenwriter Director 1986
81% Tess Director Screenwriter 1979
88% The Tenant Trelkovsky Director Screenwriter 1976
69% Blood for Dracula Man in Inn 1974
99% Chinatown Director 1974
17% Diary of Forbidden Dreams Screenwriter 1973
86% Macbeth Director Screenwriter Producer 1971
59% The Magic Christian Solitary Drinker 1970
No Score Yet A Day at the Beach Producer Screenwriter 1970
No Score Yet Blind Faith - London Hyde Park 1969 Actor 1969
No Score Yet Ciao Federico! Fellini Directs Satyricon Actor 1969
96% Rosemary's Baby Screenwriter Director 1968
69% The Fearless Vampire Killers Alfred Director 1967
No Score Yet The World's Most Beautiful Swindlers (Les plus belles escroqueries du monde) Director Screenwriter 1967
83% Cul-de-Sac Director Screenwriter 1966
95% Repulsion Screenwriter Director Spoons Player 1965
No Score Yet Ssaki (Mammals) Director 1963
100% Knife in the Water Director Screenwriter 1962
No Score Yet Gros et le maigre (The Fat and the Lean) "The lean" Director 1961
No Score Yet Innocent Sorcerers (Niewinni Czarodzieje) Actor 1960
No Score Yet Lotna (1959) Actor 1959
No Score Yet Gdy spadaja anioly (When Angels Fall Down) Actor Director 1959
No Score Yet Lampa (The Lamp) Actor Director 1959
No Score Yet Dwaj ludzie z szafa (Two Men and a Wardrobe) Director 1958
No Score Yet Usmiech zebiczny (A Toothful Smile) (Teeth Smile) Director 1957
No Score Yet Rozbijemy zabawe... (Break Up the Dance) Director 1957
No Score Yet Morderstwo (A Murderer) Director 1957
No Score Yet Pokolenie (A Generation) Actor 1955
No Score Yet La caduta degli angeli Actor Director
No Score Yet Due uomini e un armadio Director


No Score Yet Charlie Rose
Guest 2011


Man With Knife says: You're a nosy fella, kitty cat, huh? You know what happens to nosy fellas? Huh? No? Wanna guess? Huh? No? Okay. They lose their noses.

Trelkovsky says: I think I'm pregnant

Trelkovsky says: At what precise moment does an individual stop being who he thinks he is? Cut off my arm. I say, "Me and my arm." You cut off my other arm. I say, "Me and my two arms." You take out my stomach, my kidneys, assuming that were possible... And I say, "Me and my intestines." And now, if you cut off my head... would I say, "Me and my head" or "Me and my body"? What right has my head to call itself me? What right?

Trelkovsky says: At what precise moment does an individual stop being who he thinks he is? Cut off my arm. I say, 'Me and my arm.' You cut off my other arm. I say, 'Me and my two arms.' You take out my stomach, my kidneys, assuming that were possible... And I say, 'Me and my intestines.' And now, if you cut off my head... would I say, 'Me and my head' or 'Me and my body'? What right has my head to call itself me? What right?