Just days after Scarlett Johansson made headlines for defending Woody Allen in The Hollywood Reporter‘s latest cover story, the director spoke out about the backlash he’s faced recently and said he still believes he should be the poster boy for the #MeToo movement due to his track record of working with actresses.
“I’ve worked with hundreds of actresses [and] not one of them has ever complained about me, not a single complaint. I’ve worked with, employed women in the top capacity, in every capacity, for years and we’ve always paid them exactly the equal of men,” he said in an interview with France24. “I’ve done everything that the #MeToo movement would love to achieve.”
His latest film, Rainy Day in New York, is set to open the Deauville Film Festival in France on Friday. Allen will not be attending the premiere, and none of the actors are set to walk the red carpet. While the film has been shelved by Amazon in the U.S., it is being released across Europe.
After the renewed focus on charges by his adopted daughter, Dylan Farrow, that the director molested her when she was 7, several of the stars from the film, including Timothee Chalamet and Rebecca Hall, expressed regret in working on the film and donated their salaries to anti-abuse charities.
Allen said the decision of the actors to not promote the film “doesn’t matter,” and he said it may still get a U.S. release.
“To me the movie is being released all over the world,” he said. “If people enjoy the movie, I think it will eventually be released in the U.S.” However, he said he has already moved on and completed another film, which just wrapped in Spain, and is writing his next script.
Allen said that the fallout from Farrow’s allegations has not affected his work and he doesn’t fear being blackballed by Hollywood.
“I couldn’t care less. I’ve never worked in Hollywood. I’ve always worked in New York, and it doesn’t matter to me for a second. If tomorrow nobody would finance my films and nobody would finance my theater plays or nobody would publish my books, I’d still get up and write because that’s what I do. So I will always work. What happens to it commercially is another matter.”
He continued: “I haven’t thought of retiring. I don’t have to make movies. If people didn’t want to finance my movies I would be very happy working in the theater, or writing books, but I like to get up and write. I don’t like to get up and do nothing.”
His Spanish film, billed as a rom-com set at the San Sebastian Film Festival, was financed by Mediapro, which backed Allen’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona and Midnight in Paris. The film stars Christoph Waltz, Louis Garrel and Gina Gershon.
Allen said Europe, which is still welcoming the director with open arms, has embraced him since his first films.
“I consider myself so fortunate,” he said, noting that some films have performed poorly in the U.S. but been box office hits in Europe. “They always like my movies and they always were loyal … I don’t question it.”