13-year-old was 'down with this': Quentin Tarantino defends Roman Polanski
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13-year-old was 'down with this': Quentin Tarantino defends Roman Polanski

As the gaze of Hollywood turns to Quentin Tarantino after Uma Thurman revealed his part in a near fatal car crash on the set of Kill Bill, an interview where the award-winning director defended Roman Polanski over the sexual assault of a 13-year-old model has emerged.

Polanski was charged with the sexual assault of the young girl in 1977. He pleaded guilty to the charge of unlawful sex with a minor but fled to France to avoid jail time.

In 2003, Tarantino defended Polanski when Howard Stern questioned him on his show.

"How can you defend... I don't understand this, how come Hollywood embraces this madman, this director who raped a 13 year old," Stern said.

An interview where Quentin Tarantino said Roman Polanski's sexual assault victim 'wanted to have it' has emerged.

An interview where Quentin Tarantino said Roman Polanski's sexual assault victim 'wanted to have it' has emerged.

Photo: AP
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An incredulous Tarantino then went on to describe the situation as a "technicality".

"He didn't rape a 13-year-old. It was statutory rape...he had sex with a minor," Tarantino said.

"That's not rape. To me, when you use the word rape, you're talking about violent, throwing them down- it's like one of the most violent crimes in the world. You can't throw the word rape around. It's like throwing the word 'racist' around. It doesn't apply to everything people use it for."

The exchange became more bizarre when Stern's co-host Robin Quivers suggested the girl didn't want to have sex with Polanski and was plied with drugs and alcohol.

Polanski fled to France after pleading guilty to unlawful sex of a minor.

Polanski fled to France after pleading guilty to unlawful sex of a minor.

Photo: FRANCOIS MORI

"No, that was not the case at all. She wanted to have it and dated the guy," Tarantino said before Quivers interrupted to remind him the girl was 13-years-old at the time.

Tarantino continued defending Polanski by suggesting the morals being explored were American morals, not the morals of Europe before once again claiming the girl was "down with this".

The interview came to light after Uma Thurman revealed details of a near fatal accident on the set of Kill Bill.

The interview came to light after Uma Thurman revealed details of a near fatal accident on the set of Kill Bill.

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The interview re-emerged this week after Uma Thurman revealed details of a car crash on the set of Kill Bill where she was seriously injured.

"When I came back from the hospital in a neck brace with my knees damaged and a large massive egg on my head and a concussion, I wanted to see the car and I was very upset. Quentin and I had an enormous fight, and I accused him of trying to kill me. And he was very angry at that, I guess understandably, because he didn't feel he had tried to kill me," Thurman told the New York Times.

Thurman also released video of the crash from the set of the martial arts movie, leading to harsh criticism of Tarantino on social and mainstream media.

Tarantino, responding in an interview with Hollywood website Deadline.com on Monday, said Thurman's car crashed because there was an unseen curve in the road.

"Watching her fight for the wheel. ... remembering me hammering about how it was safe and she could do it. Emphasising that it was a straight road, a straight road. ... the fact that she believed me, and I literally watched this little S curve pop up. And it spins her like a top," Tarantino said.

"It was heartbreaking. Beyond one of the biggest regrets of my career, it is one of the biggest regrets of my life," he added.

Tarantino denied ignoring Thurman's anxiety about driving but acknowledged he had been mistaken about the safety of the road.

"I didn't force her into the car. She got into it because she trusted me," he said.

The Oscar-winning director also said that incidents when he spat on Thurman and choked her with a chain were part of the filming process for "Kill Bill" and were carried out with her consent to make the scenes realistic.

Thurman's account of the car crash overshadowed her accusations of sexual misconduct by Harvey Weinstein, who produced "Kill Bill" and "Pulp Fiction."

Weinstein's lawyer on Saturday acknowledged the producer "making an awkward pass" in 1994 but said Thurman's accusations of an attempted physical assault were false.

-with AAP

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