‘‘Rosemary’s Baby’’
The sensational Satanist novel by Ira Levin, first published
in 1967. It was issued the year after the public announcement
of the founding of the Church of Satan by Anton La Vey and
the popular interest in Satanism evidenced by several front
page stories concerning La Vey’s activities (including a military
funeral) and his appearance on the Johnny Carson television
show.
The Paramount movie version starring Mia Farrow was directed
by Roman Polanski. La Vey was hired as a consultant
and appeared briefly as the devil. La Vey called the film ‘‘the
best paid commercial for Satanism since the Inquisition,’’ and
saw it as contributing to the growth of his church.
Some interesting coincidental events surrounded the film’s
release. On June 5, 1968, ten days before Rosemary’s Baby was
released, Polanski and his wife Sharon Tate dined with Robert
Kennedy in Malibu; shortly afterward Kennedy left for the Ambassador
Hotel, where he was assassinated.
A year later, on August 7, 1969, followers of Charles Manson
brutally stabbed, mutilated, and murdered Sharon Tate
and her unborn baby, together with four other people at the
Polanski residence, Los Angeles.
The premises of the American Society for Psychical Research
were housed immediately behind the famous Dakota
Apartments in Manhattan, the large Gothic building that was
the setting for Rosemary’s Baby.
Sources
Levin, Ira. Rosemary’s Baby. New York Random House,
1967.

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