Wladislaw Szpilman was the inspiration behind the 2002 movie “The Pianist.”

Family of ‘The Pianist’ Wins Suit Against Book Alleging Jewish Musician Had Nazi Ties

The family of the late Polish-Jewish man whose story inspired the Academy Award-winning 2002 film “The Pianist” has won on appeal a defamation suit over claims that he was a Nazi collaborator.

According to Agence France Press, the widow and son of Wladyslaw Szpilman said Monday they have won their suit against the author and publisher of a 2010 biography of Polish-Jewish singer Wiera Gran. In it, the singer claims Szpilman had worked for the Nazis in the Warsaw Ghetto.

Gran had also been accused of cooperating with the Nazis.

The Warsaw Appeals Court overturned a 2013 ruling that said the book was protected under author Agata Tuszynska’s right to free speech.

The ruling gives Tuszynska and her publishers 15 days to publicly apologize and to excise the passages from future editions of the work.

“This ruling will allow the ethical standards in Poland to improve and bring into question the poorly interpreted notion of freedom of speech,” said Andrzej Szpilman, the son.

Roman Polanski’s 2002 film about Szpilman, whose music helped him survive the Holocaust, won three Academy Awards. Szpilman died in 2000.


Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Family of ‘The Pianist’ Wins Suit Against Book Alleging Jewish Musician Had Nazi Ties

Thank you!

This article has been sent!