Polanski attends wife's concert in Switzerland

Sat Jul 17, 2010 3:58pm EDT
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By Stephanie Nebehay and Denis Balibouse

MONTREUX, Switzerland (Reuters) - Film director Roman Polanski, freed earlier this week from house arrest in Switzerland, attended a Saturday night concert given by his wife at the Montreux jazz festival.

The 76-year-old Polanski arrived with festival founder Claude Nobs for the performance by French actress and singer Emmanuelle Seigner on the closing night of the annual event on Lake Geneva, according to a Reuters witness.

Polanski was mobbed by photographers as he arrived with heavy security, but did not speak or appear on the stage during his wife's 55-minute set, which he watched from a VIP box.

Montreux is an hour's drive from the village of Gstaad where Polanski was kept under house arrest at his chalet from December until last Monday, when Swiss authorities announced they would not extradite him to the United States to face sentencing for having unlawful sex with a 13-year-old girl in 1977.

Polanski was arrested last September 26 in Zurich, where he had been invited to receive an achievement award at a Swiss film festival, on the basis of a U.S. extradition request.

Before attending Saturday's show, Polanski thanked the people of Gstaad in his first television interview since being released. "I'm not sure what I will do hereafter," he told Swiss station TSR. "For the moment I'm happy to be free."

"I never asked for special treatment," he also said.

Seigner, wearing a black hat, black jeans and boots, began her performance with the theme song from Polanski's 1968 film "Rosemary's Baby."   Continued...

<p>Film director Roman Polanksi arrives at the 44th Montreux Jazz Festival in Montreux July 17, 2010. Polanski's wife, the French actress and singer Emmanuelle Seigner, performs on the closing day of the 16-day Swiss event. Polanski had been freed on Monday from house arrest in his chalet in the Swiss resort of Gstaad after Swiss judicial authorities announced they would not extradite him to the United States. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse</p>