Woody Allen: "Harvey Weinstein Thing Is Very Sad for Everybody Involved"

Famed director, whose own daughter has accused him of sexual abuse, made his comments to the BBC

By Corinne Heller Oct 15, 2017 6:28 PMTags

Woody Allen has weighed in on Harvey Weinstein's sexual misconduct scandal, saying it is "sad" for the victims as well as for the producer himself.

The famed director, whose own daughter has accused him of sexual abuse—a claim he denied, spoke to the BBC in an interview posted on Sunday.

"The whole Harvey Weinstein thing is very sad for everybody involved," he said. "Tragic for the poor women that were involved, sad for Harvey that is life is so messed up.

"There's no winners in that, it's just very, very sad and tragic for those poor women that had to go through that," he added.

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Numerous women, including famous actresses such as Angelina Jolie and Gwyneth Paltrow, have recently accused Harvey of past sexual harassment and assault. He has apologized for his past behavior with "colleagues" and has denied allegations of non-consensual sex.

Thirteen of the women had spoken about their experiences in a New Yorker interview with Woody's estranged son Ronan Farrow, who had publicly supported his sister Dylan Farrow after she accused their father of sexual abuse in an open letter in the New York Times in 2014. The newspaper was the first to report about sexual harassment allegations against Harvey, in an article published in on October 5, and the producer has said he plans on suing the outlet.

Neither Woody nor Harvey has been charged with any crimes.

New York and London police recently launched investigations against the producer. Six women have accused Harvey of rape. One of them, British Hollyoaks actress Lysette Anthony, recently claimed the producer sexually assaulted her in her own home in the 1980s, saying the "pathetic, revolting" attack left her "disgusted and embarrassed," according to The Sunday Times. The newspaper said she gave video evidence to police.

The Guardian reported on Sunday that London police are looking into at least three sexual assault accusations against the producer. One of the alleged incidents is said to have taken place in the late 1980s in London, police said in a statement to E! News. No further details were given.

Woody told the BBC that he had never heard any of allegations of rape and sexual assault involving Harvey. Rumors of his alleged sexual misconduct have swirled around Hollywood for years.

"No one ever came to me or told me horror stories with any real seriousness," he said. "And they wouldn't, because you are not interested in it. You are interested in making your movie."

"But you do hear a million fanciful rumors all the time," he said. "And some turn out to be true and some—many—are just stories about this actress, or that actor."

Allen said he hoped the revelations would lead to "some amelioration", but also added, "You also don't want it to lead to a witch hunt atmosphere, a Salem atmosphere, where every guy in an office who winks at a woman is suddenly having to call a lawyer to defend himself. That's not right either. But sure, you hope that something like this could be transformed into a benefit for people rather than just a sad or tragic situation."

—Additional reporting by Holly Passalaqua