Thursday, October 01, 2009

Roman Polanski as a Godfather Character

It occurred to me that there are many parallels between Roman Polanski and the fictional Jack Woltz from Mario Puzo's book The Godfather. From the Jack Woltz Wikipedia entry:
In the novel, Woltz is portrayed as a man who has achieved great success in the film industry, having come up from nothing.... It is also revealed that he is a pedophile who routinely molests young girls who audition for his movies, as well as the daughters of some of his actresses. (Although this aspect of the character is left out of the feature, it can be viewed in a deleted scene).
The chronology doesn't quite jibe as the book was released in 1969 and Polanski wasn't arrested for child-rape until 1977. It does make me wonder though. Puzo wasn't above using real people as templates for characters in his books (see Frank Sinatra and Norman Mailer as examples). The inspiration for the pedophile director had to come from somewhere. Was it Polanski (do you really think his rape of the 13-year old girl was his first taste of underage sex?) or is the pedophile movie director that common in Hollywood that it could have been someone else? Polanski was in Hollywood prior to 1969 so he could have been the model for Woltz. It could be someone else or Puzo could have have made the character up out of whole cloth.

The pedophile director in The Godfather used to bother me. I wondered why Puzo would insert such disturbing information that really didn't further the plot. Now I have other questions.

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