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Dating Woody Allen was just like being in one of his movies reveals Keaton

SHE would know: going out with Woody Allen was like being in a Woody Allen movie, Diane Keaton writes in an upcoming memoir.

The Academy Award-winning actress starred with Allen in such favourites as Sleeper and Love And Death and got an Oscar for Annie Hall, in which her baggy-panted heroine meshed unforgettably with Allen's patented schlemiel. Allen and Keaton dated for a few years and remain close.

"I was his endearing oaf. I had him pegged as a cross between a 'White Thing' and the cockroach you couldn't kill," Keaton (65) writes in Then Again, which comes out next month and is excerpted in the November issue of Vogue, arriving at newsstands on October 25.

"We shared a love of torturing each other with our failures. His insights into my character were dead-on and hilarious. This bond remains the core of our friendship and, for me, love."

Keaton writes that she met Allen in 1968 when they worked together in Allen's stage comedy Play It Again, Sam, roles they re-enacted for the 1972 film version.

The actress falls for him in the script and she soon did the same in real life.

"How could I not? I was in love with him before I knew him. He was Woody Allen. Our entire family used to gather around the TV set and watch him on Johnny Carson. He was so hip, with his thick glasses and cool suits," she writes.

"But it was his manner that got me, his way of gesturing, his hands, his coughing and looking down in a self-deprecating way while he told jokes like 'I couldn't get a date for New Year's Eve so I went home and I jumped naked into a vat of Roosevelt dimes'. He was even better-looking in real life. He had a great body, and he was physically very graceful."