[I wrote this post one day before the publication of Soon-Yi’s honest conversations with Daphne Merkin. I would like to thank Daphne Merkin for writing such a powerful article. It isn’t easy to be courageous nowadays, with social media mobs and witch-hunts. To Soon-Yi: All my respect to you. Thank you so much for your courage.]
I am a huge fan of Woody Allen. I love all of his movies. I think he’s one of the best film makers of all times. His art really makes life better.
Nowadays we’re living in a crazy reality in which the internet lynch mob judges and condemns, professional investigations and testimonies don’t count, and everybody stays silent when confronted by injustices. Hypocrisy and opportunism are really fashionable these days.
I’ve never been interested in gossip. I’ve never cared much about the personal life of the artist, since art and life don’t go together (anybody who creates and enjoys art knows this). But when an artist like Woody (who has worked with more than 200 actresses for over 50 years and never ever had any complaint from any of them) is wrongly accused it makes me furious, especially since the accusations are done by the herd, the social media mob and a few sinking movements.
I strongly believe that beneath Dylan Farrow’s crocodile tears there is something that triggers people. And that’s Woody and Soon-Yi’s love story. Because, let’s be frank, that’s why some people believe Dylan Farrow’s inconsistent and ridiculous accusations.
The internet lynch mob doesn’t think. It feels. For the herd it does not matter that Dylan Farrow’s story is full of inconsistencies, and that these inconsistencies have been supported by the powerful statement of Moses Farrow. For the herd it also does not matter that 25 years ago dr. John M. Leventhal concluded that Dylan Farrow either invented the story or that this fantasy was planted in Dylan Farrow’s mind by Mia Farrow. It also does not matter that the New York State child welfare investigators dropped their inquiry saying they considered the accusation against Woody Allen unfounded, stating: “No credible evidence was found that the child named in this report has been abused or maltreated”. For the herd it does not matter that Farrow’s nanny told Woody’s lawyers that Farrow pressured her to support molestation accusations against him. And it also does not matter that the Yale-New Haven Hospital’s Child Sexual Abuse Clinic Evaluation of Dylan Farrow concluded that Dylan Farrow was not sexually abused: “It is our expert opinion that Dylan was not sexually abused by Mr. Allen” (that report has surprisingly disappeared from the net). There was never a trial against Woody, since the accusations were found unfounded. But none of this matters, because the internet lynch mob does not think. What matters here is that the social media mob feels disgusted with Woody and Soon-Yi’s affair. Ignorant people (in other words: the vast majority of people that condemn Woody) always link the two issues.
That’s why I think that maybe it’s time to talk about Woody and Soon-Yi’s love story.
I’ll try to make it short because we live in a moment where people can’t stay concentrated for more than 5 minutes reading.
Let me start by saying that Woody and Soon-Yi have been together for 27 years. They have adopted two girls (Bechet and Manzie) and have formed a stable and beautiful family. Have this in mind when you read the following.
Every day I waste my time reading stupid comments written by stupid people that still argue that Soon-Yi is either Woody’s daughter or was Woody’s stepdaughter, that Woody and Mia Farrow were married or that Woody and Mia Farrow lived together. Well, none of this is true.
Since internet readers like lists, here’s an important one:
I. Soon-Yi is neither Woody’s daughter nor Woody’s step-daughter. She is the adoptive daughter of André Previn and Mia Farrow. Mia Farrow loved to collect children like stamps and adopted 10 children with different boyfriends and husbands. One of these 10 adopted children was Soon-Yi. Mia Farrow does not talk to her for 26 years.
II. Woody and Mia Farrow never married. They were together for 12 years, but never married. So, Soon-Yi was never Woody’s stepdaughter. The most surprising fact is that Woody didn’t sleep even once at Mia Farrow’s house in those 12 years. When Woody and Soon-Yi fell in love, Mia Farrow and Woody had ended their love relationship and were just friends. In Soon-Yi’s own words:
“Please don’t try and dramatize my relationship with Woody Allen. He was never any kind of father figure to me. I never had any dealings with him. He rarely came to our apartment before his own children were born. Even then, he never spoke and the truth is I never cared that much for him. He was always preoccupied with work and never talked to me. Not really to any of us. Only when Dylan was born did he start visiting regularly and then only to play with the baby. My own father is Andre Previn, who came to visit pretty often and took us all out frequently. When I first got friendly with Woody, he and Mia were finished with their romance and were just friends. I think Mia would have been just as angry if he had taken up with another actress or his secretary”, Soon-Yi, 1992
III. Woody saved Soon-Yi. Both Moses and Soon-Yi have stated that Mia Farrow was an abusive adoptive mother, who used to beat and frighten many of her adoptive children. The following horrifying statements give us a clear picture of the true Mia Farrow:
“Mia was always very hot-tempered and given to rages which terrified all the kids (…) It’s true Mia was violent with me and I have conclusive proof”, Soon-Yi
“[Mia] had a fierce temper. On one occasion, she kicked me and hit me again and again with the phone. She was always physical and violent with us” Soon-Yi
“[Mia] hit me uncontrollably all over my body. She slapped me, pushed me back and hit me on my chest (…) I was defeated, deflated, and beaten down” Moses Farrow
“As a young child, I was given a new pair of jeans. I thought they would look cool if I cut off a couple of the belt loops. When my mother found I had done this, she spanked me repeatedly—as was her way—and had me remove all my clothes saying, ‘You’re not deserving of any clothes.’ Then she had me stand naked in the corner of her room” Moses Farrow
Let’s not forget that Mia Farrow has 4 biological children and 10 adopted children. The lucky fathers are André Previn (3 children) and possibly Frank Sinatra (let’s be clear here: Ronan Farrow is a physical replica of Sinatra and Mia Farrow said in 2013 that Ronan Farrow might possibly be Sinatra’s son). Frank’s or not Frank’s, Ronan Farrow is the proof that Mia Farrow was cheating on Woody. From the 10 adopted children, it’s important to notice that two of them (Tam Farrow and Thaddeus Wilk Farrow) sadly committed suicide (Tam died from a pill overdose and Thaddeus in an apparent car crash –later it was revealed that he had shot himself in the torso). One of Mia Farrow’s adoptive daughters (Lark Previn) died of AIDS alone and in poverty at age 35. These are three tragedies that neither Mia, Dylan nor Ronan Farrow have never mentioned.
Also, let’s not forget that Mia Farrow’s own brother (John Villers-Farrow) was sentenced in 2013 to 25 years in prison for sexually abusing two boys over a period of 8 years. Wow. That’s explosive news. And, nevertheless, very few people know this fact. Again, neither Mia, Dylan nor Ronan Farrow have never made any comment about John Villers-Farrow. I know that it’s not Mia Farrow’s fault to have such a disgusting brother, but it’s her fault to have remained completely silent about him. That’s ugly and inconsistent. Ronan Farrow (always so worried about denigrating Woody in his tweets) has never ever tweeted anything about his biological uncle’s behaviour and trial. Weird, huh?
IV. Back in 1992 Soon-Yi said that the accusations against Woody involving 7-year-old Dylan Farrow were ridiculous:
“The business of him molesting Dylan is so ridiculous that I won’t dignify it with a comment. Why Dylan repeats her story is another matter, and a sinister one. I was not surprised that Mia made a videotape of Dylan saying these terrible things as I think the motive is obvious, but I was stunned that the tape would somehow find its way to the TV news,” Soon-Yi, 1992
Many of us (including the experts who investigated Dylan’s case back in 1992) believe that 7-year-old Dylan Farrow was coached by her adoptive angry and humiliated mother. Does the adult Dylan Farrow believe that she was actually molested by Woody? The truth, I don’t care. If she believes that, she should get some therapy instead of tweeting garbage about Woody and insulting all the actors and people who love Woody’s work. I do feel pity for Dylan-the-child. But I really feel repugnance for Dylan-the-adult.
Back in 1992, Mia Farrow said to Woody (you can watch Woody’s interview here): “I have something very nasty planned for you”, and, most important, “You took my daughter. I’m going to take yours”. Moses Farrow said: “My mother drummed it into me to hate my father for tearing apart the family (…) I see now that this was a vengeful way to pay him back for falling in love with Soon-Yi.”.
V. Who is Soon-Yi? Soon-Yi was born c. 1970 in Korea. She was adopted in 1977 by André Previn and Mia Farrow and brought to the States. She’s, of course, American. She majored in Art from Drew University and earned a Master’s Degree in Special Education from Columbia University.
“I’m a psychology major at college who fell for a man who happens to be the ex-boyfriend of Mia. I admit it’s offbeat, but let’s not get hysterical. The tragedy here is that, because of Mia’s vindictiveness, the children must suffer”, Soon-Yi, 1992
VI. So, the story is quite simple, folks: Soon-Yi and Woody fell in love. Having in account how much craziness was going around Mia Farrow’s madhouse (beatings, humiliations, denigrations) I don’t see Woody and Soon-Yi’s love like something weird, quite the contrary. Woody saved Soon-Yi. In any case, who are we to judge their love story?
In 1992, Soon-Yi described her relationship with Woody:
“I have a terrific relationship with Woody and realize it’s full of dramatic overtones, but it’s really quite simple. It revolves around conversations, film talk, sports talk, books and art. He’s very quiet and hardworking and finds it amazing and ironic that our relationship is of such interest to people”, Soon-Yi, 1992
VII. Soon-Yi and Woody are together for more than a quarter of a century. Soon-Yi and Woody married in Venice in 1997. They are sharing their lives together for more than a quarter of a century and have formed a beautiful family. They have two adopted daughters (Bechet and Manzie). If legally there would be any doubts about Dylan Farrow’s accusations, Woody would have never been able to adopt, a crucial point that the social media mob always overlooks.
Mia Farrow, Dylan Farrow, Ronan Farrow, mob and herd: Step off the stage.
Don’t interfere with love and stop condemning Woody and Soon-Yi’s love story. It’s not your business. And neither is it mine.
If you don’t want to watch Woody’s films, don’t watch them. No problem. That’s your loss. Woody’s films will continue being powerful, amazing, stunning and wonderful for ever and ever.
PS: I would love to be a friend of Woody Allen’s but I never had the honor of meeting him. I strongly believe that he’s innocent, that Mia Farrow was an abusive mother, and that Dylan Farrow is a phoney. Those who insulted and condemned Woody will be forgotten in a blink of an eye. Woody will always be remembered as the genius who made us laugh, cry, think and philosophise a million times with his wonderful and breathtaking art.
Antonia Tejeda Barros, Madrid, September 18, 2018