Woody Allen‘s attorney denied sexual abuse allegations against the critically acclaimed director Tuesday. But no blame was placed on Dylan Farrow for making them.
“His reaction is one of overwhelming sadness because of what has happened to Dylan,” Elkan Abramowitz told the Today show when asked how Allen, 78, reacted to his onetime adopted daughter’s open letter in The New York Times claiming he abused her.
“She was a pawn in a huge fight between him and Mia Farrow years ago, and the idea that she was molested was implanted in her by her mother,” Abramowitz said. “That memory is never going to go away. So the fact that she says this now, that it happened 20 years ago, is totally understandable.”
Abramowitz said Mia Farrow was furious at Allen for having started up a relationship with then 19-year-old Soon-Yi Previn in 1992 — Farrow had adopted Soon-Yi with musician André Previn.
In the letter, Dylan wrote, “(W)hen I was 7 years old, Woody Allen took me by the hand and led me into a dim, closet-like attic on the second floor of our house. He told me to lay on my stomach and play with my brother’s electric train set. Then he sexually assaulted me.”
Asked why a grown woman would lie – Dylan is now 28, married and living in Florida under a different name – Abramowitz said: “In my view, she’s not lying. I think she truly believes this happened. That’s what the vice of this is. When you implant a story in a fragile 7-year-old’s mind, it stays there forever. It never goes away.”
Abramowitz added: “Woody Allen is not interested in suing anybody for defamation. He was determined not to have molested his daughter 20 years ago. The case is over. There is no case. The fact that it is being brought up now is suspect. The timing is suspect.”
Pressed on that last statement, Abramowitz said: “I think that it’s a continuation of Mia Farrow’s desire to hurt Woody Allen. And Woody Allen is now riding fairly high. He got the Golden Globe Award for lifetime achievement, which he totally deserved. And I believe it revived the anger that she has toward him.”