Filmmaker Woody Allen says he wasn’t offended by a comedian’s rape joke at the Cannes Film Festival on Thursday, and that he doesn’t plan to read a column by his estranged son Ronan Farrow, which revisited allegations by sibling Dylan Farrow that Allen had sexually abused her in 1993.
“I am completely in favor of comedians making any jokes they want,” Allen, 80, said in response to a question asked by Variety at a press lunch Thursday for his film “Café Society,” which opened the festival. At the opening ceremony Wednesday, French comedian Laurent Lafitte had quipped to Allen, “It’s very nice that you’ve been shooting so many movies in Europe, even if you are not being convicted for rape in the U.S.”
“I am a nonjudgmental or censorship person on jokes,” Allen continued. “I’m a comic myself and I feel they should be free to make whatever jokes they want,” adding, “It would take a lot to offend me.”
Variety also asked Allen about a column by Ronan Farrow, 28, which ran in The Hollywood Reporter Wednesday. In it, Farrow supported sister Dylan Farrow’s allegations and criticized the media for not, he felt, pursuing the matter thoroughly enough. “I never read anything about me, these interviews I do, anything,” Allen replied. “I said everything I had to say about that whole issue in The New York Times,” for which he wrote an op-ed piece in February 2014 responding to one by Dylan Farrow days earlier. “I have moved so far past it. I never think about it. I work. I said I was never going to comment on it again. I said everything I have to say about it.”
Allen reiterated his opinions to The Washington Post at the same luncheon: “I never speak to that. . . . I made my statement a long time ago in The New York Times, they gave me a lot of space and, you know . . . I just think it’s so silly, the whole thing. So no, it doesn’t bother me. I don’t think about it. I work.”
No charges were ever pursued, and Allen has denied Dylan Farrow’s allegations.