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Actress Kate Winslet.(VALERIE MACON/AFP/Getty Images)

‘Don’t know anything’

Kate Winslet criticized for ‘clumsily’ and ‘awkwardly’ defending decision to work with Woody Allen

By WITW Staff on September 8, 2017

A new Woody Allen film is set to hit theaters soon, an occasion that once again puts his stars in the uncomfortable position of trying to explain why they chose to work with a director who was accused decades ago of molesting his then-7-year-old adoptive daughter. The latest Hollywood A-lister to find herself in this position is Kate Winslet, who stars in Allen’s forthcoming film Wonder Wheel.

“I didn’t know Woody and I don’t know anything about that family,” Winslet told The New York Times when asked about how she reconciled the director’s checkered past. “As the actor in the film, you just have to step away and say, I don’t know anything, really, and whether any of it is true or false. Having thought it all through, you put it to one side and just work with the person.”

In 1992, Allen was accused by Mia Farrow, his partner at the time, of molesting Dylan Farrow, the daughter the couple adopted. Five years later, Allen, then 62, married Farrow’s adopted daughter Soon-Yi Previn, who was 27. The two are still married and Allen, though a prosecutor in the 1990s said he had probable cause, has never been charged with a crime and has maintained his innocence. But three years ago, Dylan Farrow published an explosive column in The New York Times detailing Allen’s alleged sexual abuse and the fallout she suffered in the intervening years.

She even went on to praise Roman Polanski,  The New York Post noted, saying he’s an “incredible director” and that her time working with him, on the 2011 film Carnage, and Allen was “extraordinary.” Polanski was convicted in 1977 of raping a 13-year-old girl. He subsequently fled the U.S. and has been living as a fugitive ever since.

Winslet’s “I don’t know anything” explanation of how she’s able to compartmentalize and work with someone who has such disturbing allegations standing against him drew criticisms that she “awkwardly” and “clumsily” handled a question about an all-too-common problem in the Hollywood scene: Men getting away with alleged sexual misconduct and their careers suffering no consequences whatsoever.

But, as The Washington Post points out, Winslet is hardly the first actress to defend having worked with Allen. And some have gone way further, even heaping praise upon the controversial director.

Read the full story at The Washington Post.


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