Roman Polanski Biography

Roman Polanski Biography

Renowned for his creative prowess and merit, Roman Polanski is a celebrated film director, actor, and performing artist. Throughout his illustrious career, he has produced numerous movies that have garnered critical acclaim and immense popularity. Among his most famous works are Rosemary’s Baby (1969), The Pianist (2002), The Ghost Writer (2010), Carnage (2011), and Knife in the Water (1962).

Born into a Jewish family in Paris, France on August 18, 1933, Polanski and his family relocated to Poland in 1941. However, their lives were upended during World War II when the Nazis imprisoned them, and tragically, his mother perished while in captivity. To avoid the dangers of the war, Polanski was forced to hide with various Jewish families for extended periods until finally being reunited with his father in 1944.

Polanski honed his acting skills by appearing in various movies and radio dramas before gaining admission to the Polish National Film Academy in 1954. He went on to act in several films, including Lotna (1959) and Samson (1961). In 1962, he directed his debut film Knife in the Water, which garnered international recognition and catapulted him to fame virtually overnight. Following this success, Polanski relocated to London and directed his next film, Repulsion (1965), which further solidified his status as a prominent filmmaker.

In 1968, Roman Polanski relocated to Hollywood to direct his latest film, Rosemary’s Baby. Unfortunately, this period marked one of the most tragic incidents of his life when members of the Charles Manson cult brutally murdered his pregnant wife, Sharon Tate, in 1969. This experience of extreme violence deeply impacted Polanski, and it is reflected in many of his subsequent films. However, in 1977, Polanski faced legal troubles when he was indicted for the sexual abuse of a 13-year-old child at Jack Nicholson’s home. Nicholson and his girlfriend testified against Polanski, and the courts ultimately found him guilty, ordering him to undergo psychiatric treatment.

In 1979, Roman Polanski directed his film Tess in Paris, which garnered both critical acclaim and criticism. Throughout the 1980s, he remained active in stage performances, directing productions of Amadeus (1981) and Metamorphosis (1988), which were widely celebrated. However, it was his direction of the film Death and the Maiden in 1994 that cemented his legacy as an immortal artist.

Roman Polanski’s film The Pianist (2002) achieved tremendous popularity, earning him an Oscar for Best Director. In the years following its release, he directed a string of successful films, including Oliver Twist and The Ghost. Today, movie enthusiasts around the world hold him in high esteem, ranking him among the greatest film directors of all time.


Born: August 18, 1933 (age 83), 12th arrondissement, Paris, France
Height: 5′ 5″
Books: Roman by Polanski, Polanski: Three Film Scripts, More


Spouse: Emmanuelle Seigner (m. 1989), Sharon Tate (m. 1968–1969), Barbara Kwiatkowska-Lass (m. 1959–1962)
Children: Morgane Polanski, Elvis Polanski


  • Trzy opowiesci (1953)
  • Zaczarowany rower (1955)
  • Wraki (1957)
  • Co rekne zena? (1958)
  • Lotna (1959)
  • Samson (1961)
  • Back in the U.S.S.R. (1992)
  • Zemsta (2002)
  • Caos calmo (2008)

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