Director Roman Polanski is in production on his new drama The Palace in Switzerland.
The project, starring Mickey Rourke, is part of the slate of RAI Cinema, the film arm of Italian public broadcaster RAI.
The Palace is set on New Year’s Eve in 1999, “which is the epilogue of an entire millennium,” said RAI Cinema chief Paolo Del Brocco. The film is situated “in a big hotel immersed in the Swiss Alps where the lives of the guests and those who work for them intersect.”
Rourke post on Instagram: “End of the day, once again, a great pleasure to work with legendary and talented Roman Polanski. Working with such a director i feel is a great privilege his film has such integrity, style, class and unpredictability…Switzerland is a beautiful country.”
Italian actor-producer Luca Barbareschi is lead producer via his Eliseo Entertainment company. CAB Productions is the Swiss co-producer. Script comes from Polanski and fellow Polish veteran Jerzy Skolimowski. The rest of the cast has yet to be confirmed.
Polanski remains a controversial figure in the industry. He was arrested and charged with drugging and raping a 13-year old girl in 1977. He pleaded guilty at the time to a lesser charge of unlawful sex with a minor. But when he found out that the judge planned to reject his plea deal and impose a prison term instead of probation, he fled to Paris. As a result, Polanski is a fugitive from the U.S.
He has since worked in Europe and his last film, An Officer and a Spy won three Cesar awards in France and four prizes at the Venice Film Festival in 2020.