Quentin Tarantino apologises to Roman Polanski teen rape victim for saying she ‘wanted to have it’
Public apology to Samantha Geimer, who was 13 at time of the incident, comes after a 2003 interview with Howard Stern resurfaced in which the Pulp Fiction and Kill Bill director claimed Polanski ‘didn’t rape a 13-year-old’
Quentin Tarantino has apologised to Samantha Geimer after suggesting her sex assault by Roman Polanski was “not rape” and that she “wanted to have it”.
Geimer was 13 years old in 1977 when Polanski plied her with champagne and part of a Quaalude depressant pill, and raped and sodomised her.
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Speaking to the New York Daily News this week, Geimer said Tarantino was “wrong” when he made his comments during a 2003 interview with Howard Stern. “He is obviously incorrect. Hopefully by now he knows that it didn’t happen that way,” Geimer told The News.
“I’m not upset, but I would probably feel better if he realises now that he was wrong, after 15 years, after hearing the facts,” she said.
In a statement to IndieWire.com on Thursday, Tarantino said he regretted his remarks.
“I want to publicly apologise to Samantha Geimer for my cavalier remarks on The Howard Stern Show speculating about her and the crime that was committed against her. Fifteen years later, I realise how wrong I was,” Tarantino said.
“Ms Geimer WAS raped by Roman Polanski. When Howard brought up Polanski, I incorrectly played devil’s advocate in the debate for the sake of being provocative. I didn’t take Ms Geimer’s feelings into consideration and for that I am truly sorry
“So, Ms Geimer, I was ignorant, and insensitive, and above all, incorrect. I am sorry Samantha.”
In her interview with The News this week, Geimer said she was surprised to wake up Tuesday and see the brouhaha over Tarantino’s suggestion that her rape at the tender age of 13 was a consensual encounter.
“He was wrong. I bet he knows it,” Geimer told The News. “I hope he doesn’t make an a** of himself and keep talking that way.”
In the Stern interview that resurfaced late Monday on Jezebel.com, Tarantino was heard defending Polanski’s actions in the criminal case that led to the Chinatown director’s conviction and ongoing fugitive status.
“He didn’t rape a 13-year-old. It was statutory rape … he had sex with a minor. That’s not rape. To me, when you use the word rape, you’re talking about violent, throwing them down – it’s like one of the most violent crimes in the world,” Tarantino told Stern and co-host Robin Quivers.
“She wanted to have it,” Tarantino said.
“Wait a minute,” Stern corrected him. “If you have sex with a 13-year-old girl and you’re a grown man, you know that that’s wrong.”
“Giving her booze and pills,” Quivers said.
“Look, she was down with this,” Tarantino argued back.
Now living in Hawaii, Geimer said she is a fan of Tarantino’s work and was willing to forgive and forget considering his more recent comments supporting actress Uma Thurman and other victims of assault.
“It’s not a big deal to me what people think. It doesn’t make a difference in my life. I know what happened. I do not need other people weighing in on what it’s like getting raped at 13,” she told The News.
Geimer said she made peace with what happened by writing her 2013 book, The Girl: A Life in the Shadow of Roman Polanski.
She told The News in 2015 that she has forgiven Polanski, 84, for the assault at actor Jack Nicholson’s compound in the Hollywood Hills.
She said the six weeks Polanski served in prison during a court-ordered evaluation before he fled the country on the eve of sentencing in 1978 were enough for her.
“I have forgiven him and moved on,” she told The News. “He pled guilty, served his time, and I’m not quite sure what anyone expects beyond that. That’s satisfactory to me. It should be to everyone.”
Geimer said on Tuesday that the Tarantino-penned flick True Romance is still one of her favourite movies.
“I like that kind of movie. I like his movies,” she said.