Friday 20 July 2018

Michael Caine says he wouldn’t work with Woody Allen again

Actor is the latest to say he would not work with the director, amid the growing Time's Up and #MeToo movements

Sir Michael Caine
Sir Michael Caine
Woody Allen (Ian West/PA)
Woody Allen and his wife Soon-Yi Previn. Photo: Getty Images

Michael Caine has said he would not work with Woody Allen again after learning of the allegations against him.

The actor, who won an Oscar for his role in Allen’s film Hannah and Her Sisters, spoke to the Guardian in a Q&A about a wide variety of subjects.

Asked about the director, who has been condemned by several high profile actors and industry figures in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, said he was “stunned” when he heard about the accusations.

“I’m a patron of the NSPCC and have very strong views about paedophilia,” he said. “I can’t come to terms with it, because I loved Woody and had a wonderful time with him. I even introduced him to Mia [Farrow]. I don’t regret working with him, which I did in complete innocence; but I wouldn’t work with him again, no.”

Allen recently denied resurfaced sexual assault claims made by his adopted daughter Dylan Farrow.

Farrow appeared on the CBS Morning Show in January 2018 to renew the allegations, adding how actors who work with the director should “acknowledge their complicity” in perpetrating a “culture of silence in their industry.”

The 32-year-old went on to detail the alleged assault, saying: “I was taken to a small attic crawlspace in my mother’s country house in Connecticut by my father. He instructed me to lay down on my stomach and play… As I played with the toy train I was sexually assaulted.”

When aged seven, Farrow said Allen “touched my private parts.” During the new interview, she said: “As a 32-year-old: he touched my labia and my vulva with his finger.”

Allen has since responded to the allegations once more, accusing ex-wife and Dylan’s mother Mia Farrow of “relentlessly coaching” her into thinking he was a “dangerous sexual predator”.

In a statement, the director pointed out that an investigation happened following the incident and that he was never charged. Allen then accused the Farrow family of “cynically using the opportunity afforded by the Time's Up movement to repeat this discredited allegation”.

“I never molested my daughter — as all investigations concluded a quarter of a century ago,” Allen said. “When this claim was first made more than 25 years ago, it was thoroughly investigated by both the Child Sexual Abuse Clinic of the Yale-New Haven Hospital and New York State Child Welfare.

“They both did so for many months and independently concluded that no molestation had ever taken place. Instead, they found it likely a vulnerable child had been coached to tell the story by her angry mother during a contentious breakup.”

Journalist Ronan Farrow — Dylan's brother — was one of the first people to report on the sexual assault allegations against Harvey Weinstein, a report that prompted the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements.

Actors Timothee Chalamet and Rebecca Hall both pledged to donate their salaries from their upcoming Woody Allen film A Rainy Day in New York to a handful of organisations including Time’s Up, the LGBT Community Center and RAINN, a group that works against sexual violence.

“It’s a small gesture and not one intended as close to compensation but I’ve donated my wage to @timesup,” Hall wrote.

Chalamet said: “I want to be worthy of standing shoulder to shoulder with the brave artists who are fighting for all people to be treated with the respect and dignity they deserve.”

Independent News Service

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