Woody Allen says it has become 'fashionable' for celebrities to denounce him

Megan C. Hills
Legal action: US director Woody Allen is suing Amazon for ditching his latest film: AFP/Getty Images

Woody Allen has said that is has become “fashionable” to denounce him over longstanding sexual assault allegations by his daughter Dylan Farrow, calling actors who do so “silly” and “self-serving.” Allen has denied Farrow’s claims over the years as many actors - including Kate Winslet, Timothée Chalamet and more - have distanced themselves from the director, particularly in the wake of MeToo.

Allen said, “It’s silly. The actors have no idea of the facts and they latch on to some self-serving, public, safe position. Who in the world is not against child molestation?”

“That’s how actors and actresses are, and [denouncing me] became the fashionable thing to do, like everybody suddenly eating kale,” he continued.

(Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

“You can give them the facts over and over,” he continued, “But the facts don’t matter. For some reason, emotionally, it’s important for them to buy into the story.”

He also claimed in his recent memoir Apropos of Nothing (which was originally supposed to be published by Hachette, but led to company-wide protests after employees claimed they had not been informed of the acquisition) that Timothée Chalamet felt he “needed” to denounce him.

Timothée Chalamet (Invision/AP)

Chalamet and his co-star Selena Gomez were criticised for working with Allen on the film Rainy Day and according to Allen, Chalamet told Allen’s sister “he needed to do that as he was up for an Oscar” - adding that he claimed “he and his agent felt he had a better chance of winning if he denounced me, so he did.” The Guardian said that Chalamet did not return a request for comment.

Chalamet released a statement to Instagram expressing his regret over working with Allen and donated his salary to charity.

Kate Winslet is another star to have worked with Allen on Wonder Wheel and while she did not address Allen by name, she gave a tearful speech expressing “bitter regrets that I have about poor decisions to work with individuals with whom I wish I had not.” (Winslet has also worked with Roman Polanski, who has denied a number of sexual assault allegations.)

As she accepted an award from the London Critics’ Circle, she said at the time, “It has become clear to me that by not saying anything, I might be adding to the anguish of many courageous women and men. Sexual abuse is a crime.”

Other actors have on the other hand defended Allen from allegations, including Scarlett Johansson and Diane Keaton - both of whom have received backlash for their position.

Woody Allen and his wife Soon-Yi Previn (AP)

Allen also discussed Farrow’s nearly three decades-long sexual assault allegations against him, which stem from his daughter’s claims that he sexually assaulted her as a seven year old. Allen said he thought “people would see it as laughable rubbish right away”, adding, “I mean, it’s like being confronted with a story that I murdered six people with a machine gun.”

The Guardian article says , 'Farrow alleged that Allen – never accused of any impropriety before or since – molested Dylan in her house in Connecticut, doctors examined her and found no physical evidence of abuse. Allen was then investigated by the Yale New Haven hospital’s sexual abuse clinic and New York City’s Child Welfare Administration. The former concluded: “It is our expert opinion that Dylan was not sexually molested by Mr Allen.” The latter, after a 14-month investigation, wrote: “No credible evidence was found that the child named in this report has been abused or maltreated.” '

Mia Farrow and Dylan Farrow (Getty Images)

Farrow’s allegations were investigated against Allen twice, however nothing was ever filed. In 1993, Attorney Frank Maco decided against prosecuting Allen despite having “probable cause” as he believed it would inflict trauma on Farrow. He spoke again of his decision in The Guardian piece, saying that Farrow “just couldn’t” talk about what had happened to her not just in a court but “in any setting.”

According to a New York Times report at the time, Maco ‘seemed to go out of his way to say publicly that he believed the child had been molested.’

According to The Guardian article, Maco’s other public comment on the case was: “To risk the wellbeing of a child where there is evidence which points to the existence of a reasonable doubt is nothing less than to sacrifice the child on an altar of public spectacle.”

Allen has vehemently denied all accusations.