In an open letter to the New York Times, Dylan Farrow writes of a history of sexual abuse, including a time when the director assaulted her in the attic of their home when she was only seven
LOS ANGELES: Woody Allen’s adopted daughter, in a wrenching letter, describes in stomach-churning detail how the iconic film director sexually abused her around the year of 1992.
Final Straw: Dylan (pictured with Woody Allen in 1992, around the time of the abuse) said she felt guilty that he got away with the crime and was never convicted
“When I was seven-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,” wrote Dylan Farrow, who is now 28.
“He told me to lay on my stomach and play with my brother’s electric train set. Then he sexually assaulted me.”
She writes, “He talked to me while he did it, whispering that I was a good girl, that this was our secret, promising that we’d go to Paris and I’d be a star in his movies.”
“I remember staring at that toy train, focusing on it as it travelled in its circle around the attic. To this day, I find it difficult to look at toy trains.”
The 78-year-old Allen has been dogged for two decades by claims he sexually abused his daughter.
But Farrow’s painful letter marks the first time she has spoken publicly and detailed what she says Allen did to her.
“For as long as I could remember, my father had been doing things to me that I didn’t like,” reads the letter, which was published in The New York Times.
“I didn’t like how often he would take me away from my mom, siblings and friends to be alone with him. I didn’t like it when he would stick his thumb in my mouth.”
She adds, “I didn’t like it when I had to get in bed with him under the sheets when he was in his underwear. I didn’t like it when he would place his head in my naked lap and breathe in and breathe out.”
Farrow — who is the daughter of Mia Farrow, Allen’s ex-girlfriend — wrote that she hid under beds and locked herself in bathrooms to avoid her deviant dad.
“But he always found me,” she wrote. “These things happened so often, so routinely, so skillfully hidden from a mother that would have protected me had she known, that I thought it was normal,” reads the letter.
“I thought this was how fathers doted on their daughters. But what he did to me in the attic felt different. I couldn’t keep the secret anymore.”
Allen — who is now married to another of Farrow’s adopted daughters, Soon-Yi — has long denied the allegations.
In her letter, Dylan Farrow says she never got over the fact that Allen was never convicted of a crime.
“That he got away with what he did to me haunted me as I grew up,” she wrote.
“I was stricken with guilt that I had allowed him to be near other little girls. I was terrified of being touched by men. I developed an eating disorder. I began cutting myself. That torment was made worse by Hollywood. All but a precious few (my heroes) turned a blind eye.”
Dylan Farrow called out several Hollywood stars who have appeared in Allen’s films.
“What if it had been your child, Cate Blanchett? Louis CK? Alec Baldwin?” she wrote.
“What if it had been you, Emma Stone? Or you, Scarlett Johansson? You knew me when I was a little girl, Diane Keaton. Have you forgotten me?
“Woody Allen is a living testament to the way our society fails the survivors of sexual assault and abuse. So imagine your seven-year-old daughter being led into an attic by Woody Allen. Imagine she spends a lifetime stricken with nausea at the mention of his name. Imagine a world that celebrates her tormenter. Are you imagining that?”
Woody Allen made headlines in 1992 when, at the age of 56, it was revealed that he was in a relationship with 21-year-old Soon-Yi Previn.
It was not Previn’s age that was shocking but that she was Mia Farrow, who was then Allen’s girlfriend’s adopted daughter. Allen and Previn wed in December 1997 in Venice, Italy. Back in 1992, Soon-Yi Previn told Time magazine she never considered Allen a father figure in her life.