Woody Allen is clarifying a comment he made to BBC News about accused serial rapist Harvey Weinstein the other day. Originally, the British outlet quoted the director as saying “the whole Harvey Weinstein thing is very sad for everybody involved,” observing that while “tragic for the poor women that were involved,” the revelation that there were decades of sexual assault and harassment allegations was “sad for Harvey that [his] life is so messed up.” Allen followed that up by saying—out loud, no less—that he sure hopes this doesn’t turn into a “witch hunt,” telling BBC News that men who wink at their female co-workers shouldn’t have to lawyer up.
The witch hunt remark didn’t go over well, obviously, but when the director next spoke about the matter, it was to explain that he thinks Weinstein is “sad,” not his current circumstances—circumstances that could include a huge payday, because everything is awful. Allen, who’s been accused by his daughter Dylan Farrow of sexual abuse in the past, issued a new statement (via Variety), in which he still shows an unseemly amount of sympathy for the disgraced movie exec.
When I said I felt sad for Harvey Weinstein I thought it was clear the meaning was because he is a sad, sick man. I was surprised it was treated differently. Lest there be any ambiguity, this statement clarifies my intention and feelings.
Since he’s still unable to just come out and say it, we’ll point Allen to some far more declarative statements from folks like Emma Thompson, who flat out calls Weinstein a “predator.”