The Festival del film Locarno regrets to announce that Roman Polanski has decided to cancel his visit to its 67th edition.
Only a short while ago, the leadership of the Festival has received the following message from Roman Polanski (in Italian):
I am sorry to inform you that having considered the extent to which my planned appearance at the Locarno Festival provokes tensions and controversies among those opposed to my visit, even as I respect their opinions, it is with a heavy heart that I must cancel my visit.
I am deeply saddened to disappoint you.
Today the Festival has suffered a setback. What we consider unacceptable interference of some in the artistic liberty of the Festival has led to the decision of Roman Polanski which we certainly respect. We are greatly saddened that the public will thereby be deprived of an important opportunity for cultural enrichment.
The Festival continues to affirm its commitment to the principle of free and unfettered artistic expression.