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7 Mar, 2020 00:32

Cancel culture wins again: Publisher drops Woody Allen memoir after employee walkout

Cancel culture wins again: Publisher drops Woody Allen memoir after employee walkout

New York publishing house Hachette canceled Woody Allen’s biography and returned the rights to the famous film director, after its employees staged a walkout in protest. Allen was accused of child sex abuse by his ex-partner.

“The decision to cancel Mr Allen’s book was a difficult one,” a spokeswoman for Hachette Book Group said in a statement on Friday. “We take our relationships with authors very seriously, and do not cancel books lightly.”

After dozens of HBG employees walked out in protest on Thursday, however, the company “came to the conclusion that moving forward with publication would not be feasible.”

The decision probably had something to do with the fact that earlier in the week, celebrity journalist and Allen’s son Ronan Farrow announced he would cut ties with Hachette, accusing Allen once again of molesting his adopted daughter and Farrow’s sister Dylan, over two decades ago.

Farrow is revered by the #MeToo movement for his reporting on how Hollywood movie mogul Harvey Weinstein – recently convicted of rape by a Manhattan jury – got away with sexual abuse for years. A book account, called ‘Catch and Kill,’ was published by a Hachette imprint last year.

Allen’s memoir, titled ‘Apropos of Nothing,’ was scheduled for publication in April and was supposed to be “a comprehensive account of his life, both personal and professional,” including the director’s tumultuous relationship with his family.

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Ronan Farrow is the biological child of Allen and actress Mia Farrow, who cohabited with the director from 1980 to 1992 but never married him. They adopted a number of other children together – including Dylan, whom Allen was accused of sexually abusing after the couple separated in 1992. After two investigations, Allen was never charged and the actress got custody of the children.

One of those children, Moses Farrow, went public in 2018 with a testimony that Allen was innocent, adding that people condemning the director rushed to do so “based on a discredited accusation for fear of not being on the ‘right’ side of a major social movement.”

Once a beloved comedian dubbed “a treasure of the cinema” by film critic Roger Ebert, Allen has spent the last two decades under a cloud of Farrow’s claims, with outrage ramping up as Ronan Farrow became more prominent in the MeToo movement.

Most recently, the outcry resulted in Amazon Studios canceling Allen’s 2019 film 'A Rainy Day in New York,' prompting him to sue for breach of contract over “a 25-year-old, baseless allegation.” The case was settled in November last year.

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