The Ottumwa Courier

AP National

February 3, 2014

Woody Allen's allies cast doubt on abuse claims

NEW YORK (AP) — Some of Woody Allen's allies have come to his defense, casting doubt on renewed accusations by Dylan Farrow that she was sexually assaulted by her then-adoptive father when she was 7.

Allen's lawyer, studio and publicist weighed in on Farrow's open letter, published online Saturday by The New York Times, in which she claimed that in 1992 at the family's Connecticut home, Allen led her to a "dim, closet-like attic" and then sexually assaulted her. Farrow didn't specify Allen's actions but described other abusive behavior.

The movie director's publicist, Leslee Dart, said in an email Sunday that Allen has read Farrow's letter.

"Mr. Allen has read the article and found it untrue and disgraceful," Dart said, signaling that Allen would fight the claims dating back to Allen's tempestuous relationship with actress Mia Farrow in the early 1990s.

Elkan Abramowitz, Allen's lawyer, said: "It is tragic that after 20 years a story engineered by a vengeful lover resurfaces after it was fully vetted and rejected by independent authorities. The one to blame for Dylan's distress is neither Dylan nor Woody Allen."

Allen was investigated on child molestation claims for the 1992 accusation but was never charged.

Dylan Farrow's open letter didn't urge renewed legal action but a retrial for Allen in the court of public opinion. Farrow, who now lives in Florida, is married, and goes by another name, argued for fans of Allen's movies and actors who star in his films not to "turn a blind eye."

But on Sunday, Sony Pictures Classics, which regularly distributes Allen's films including his latest, "Blue Jasmine," urged caution in any rush to judgment.

"This is a very complicated situation and a tragedy for everyone involved," the company said in a statement. "Mr. Allen has never been charged in relationship to any of this, and therefore deserves our presumption of innocence."

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