On April 23, I talk to director Damian Chapa after the premiere of his movie "Polanski, Unauthorized."
The interview begins three minute into this video.
Luke: "How do you think Roman Polanski will feel about this?"
Damian: "I hope he sees it."
Luke: "Do you think he’ll respect it, like it?"
Damian: "You never know how another person thinks about your work.
"It’s really easy to judge people. The hardest thing in life is to forgive and have redemption. That goes for all of us. This film’s about all of us. We all need to forgive and we all need to have redemption."
He waves his hands together.
Damian: "In the world, there’s a lot of tense in-between people. You’ve got to get rid of them by forgiving."
Luke: "What was the hardest part for you in playing Roman Polanski?"
Damian: "Being short."
"I had a really difficult childhood. I understand what it’s like to have emotion and pain. I had someone who died who I was in love with, who got murdered while pregnant. I understand it. That’s why I think I was the person to play it."
Luke: "When did someone you loved get murdered?"
Damian: "It was a long time ago. I don’t want to talk about it. But that’s why I understood the pain. I understand how it feels. This film is about all of us. We all had to go through this together. We try to act like we don’t, but it’s deep in our psyche. That rape or statutory situation or whatever they call it, happened to all of us and we all have to live with it. The whole world needs to purge. There’s such a dichotomy and hypocrisy and we all have to live with it until we watch it, we relive it, and we purge it."
Luke: "What’s the hypocrisy?"
Damian: "All of us, actors, filmmakers, directors, rock stars, we have a certain get-out-of-jail-free card that’s unnecessary and unfair. By the same token, we all as artists have things happen to us that may predict this kind of insanity. We live in this world where it’s OK for one person but not OK for another person. We have to purge this."
Luke: "How did you come to this project?"
Damian: "I always felt a personal parallel with [Roman Polanski]. Also, being an artist who writes, directs and stars in his own movies. I don’t think there are too many of us. What I tried to do here is show redemption. This is not about putting somebody in the limelight in a negative way."
Luke: "How much liberty does the movie take with the facts of his life?"
Damian: "Some of it is surreal. All the things that were important were based on court documents."
Luke: "It’s a complicated storytelling structure. How did you arrive on that?"
Damian: "I didn’t want to create a film where everybody would know what it would be like… The only way to do that is to jigsaw the situation to where we keep want to know more and more. Human beings need to be tested. We’re sick of going to movies where we know what’s going to happen in the first ten minutes. People want to think when they go into the theater."
Luke: "This was fun."
Damian: "It’s like a ride and people keep getting off on different rides."