Dylan Farrow opens up about Woody Allen allegations

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Emily Reynolds
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Dylan Farrow has given her first televised interview about Woody Allen. 

Speaking in her first televised interview, Dylan Farrow has repeated her claims that adoptive father Woody Allen abused her. 

“I loved my father. I respected him. He was my hero. And that doesn’t obviously take away from what he did. But it does make the betrayal and the hurt that much more intense,” she said. 

Speaking to Gayle King on CBS, Farrow outlined the abuse. 

“I was taken to a small attic crawl space in my mother’s country house in Connecticut by my father,” she said. “He instructed me to lay down on my stomach and play with my brother’s toy train that was set up.”

“And he sat behind me in the doorway, and as I played with the toy train, I was sexually assaulted … As a 7-year-old I would say, I would have said he touched my private parts. As a 32-year-old, he touched my labia and my vulva with his finger.”

“He would follow me around. He was always touching me, cuddling me and if I ever said, you know, like I want to go off by myself, he wouldn’t let me… He often asked me to get into bed with him when he had only his underwear on and sometimes when only I had my underwear on.”

Speaking on Twitter before the interview aired, Farrow said she wanted to show the “raw and honest reality”: “no airs, just the truth”. 

“I wanted to face you, I wanted you to see me; not as a Farrow, not as a figure, but as a woman telling the truth to honor the little girl that got left behind,” she wrote

“Coming forward on television was not an easy decision or one I made lightly. I knew full well I would be put under a microscope; my words analysed, my appearance critiqued.”

“We as a society expect survivors to fit a very narrow mold - sincere but not too frank, eloquent but not too put together, composed but not too rigid. We start by judging not by listening. We begin with skepticism not with belief. That must change.”

And in her interview, Farrow said that the #MeToo movement had inspired her to continue speaking about the claims. 

“With so much silence being broken by so many brave people against so many high profile people, I felt it was important to add my story to theirs,” she said.  “It was very momentous for me to see this conversation finally carried into a public setting.”

More and more actors have come out against Allen, apologising for their work with him.

Timothée Chalamet, who stars in Allen’s latest film, A Rainy Day in New York, has donated his salary from the film to a number of initiatives including Time’s Up, the LGBT Centre in New York, and RAINN [the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network]; Greta Gerwig also apologised during a New York Times roundtable. 

“I can only speak for myself and what I’ve come to is this: If I had known then what I know now, I would not have acted in the film,” she said. “I have not worked for him again, and I will not work for him again. Dylan Farrow’s two different pieces made me realise that I increased another woman’s pain, and I was heartbroken by that realisation.” 

British actor Colin Firth has also stated that he will never work with the director again. 

Farrow has been speaking out about her abuse for many years. In a 2014 op-ed for the New York Times, Farrow described how she had felt “silenced” and “rebuked” by Allen’s continued success.

“Last week, Woody Allen was nominated for his latest Oscar,” she wrote. “But this time, I refuse to fall apart. For so long, Woody Allen’s acceptance silenced me. It felt like a personal rebuke, like the awards and accolades were a way to tell me to shut up and go away. But the survivors of sexual abuse who have reached out to me – to support me and to share their fears of coming forward, of being called a liar, of being told their memories aren’t their memories – have given me a reason to not be silent, if only so others know that they don’t have to be silent either.”

And earlier this year, Farrow wrote a piece for the LA Times asking “Why has the #MeToo revolution spared Woody Allen?”.

“It isn’t just power that allows men accused of sexual abuse to keep their careers and their secrets. It is also our collective choice to see simple situations as complicated and obvious conclusions as a matter of “who can say”? The system worked for Harvey Weinstein for decades. It works for Woody Allen still.”

Allen has denied the claims. 

Image: Rex Features