Roman Polanski wins the Silver Bear at Berlin

Roman Polanski has won the Silver Bear for best director at the Berlin Film Festival for his new political thriller, The Ghost Writer, but he could not accept it because he is engaged in a lawsuit for having sex with a minor in 1977.

His producer, Alain Sarde, accepted the best director prize instead Polanski on Saturday and he said: “I am sure Roman will be very happy. However, when I was lamenting with him that he cannot be with us, he said to me, ‘even if I could, I wouldn’t because the last time I went to a festival to get a prize, I ended up in jail.’”

The Ghost Writer, which is about a writer hired to complete the memoirs of a former British prime minister, had its premiere at Berlin.

A judge in Los Angeles ruled in January that Polanski had to attend court in the US if he wanted to resolve the case. He left the US in 1978 before sentencing and has never returned.

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