Woody Allen’s memoir axed by publisher Hachette following staff protest

Hachette Book Group has axed plans to publish a memoir by Woody Allen.

The book companies decision came after Hachette staff staged a walkout on Thursday protesting against plans to publish the book.

Woody, 84, has been accused of sexually abusing his adopted daughter Dylan Farrow.

Dylan, 33, has long claimed that she was molested by the star during his relationship with her mother Mia Farrow in the 1980s.

Allen has vehemently denied her allegations.

The company was also hit with criticism from Dylan and her brother Ronan Farrow.

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The photo of the protest was shared on Twitter on Thursday, alongside the message: "75 plus employees of Hachette are standing in solidarity with @ronanfarrow , @realdylanfarrow and survivors of sexual assault and walked out of the Hachette offices today in protest of Woody Allen’s memoir. #HachetteWalkout#LittleBrownWalkout ."

Hachette Book Group spokeswoman Sophie Cottrell called the decision to cancel Allen's autobiography "a difficult one" that was not made "lightly".

"At HBG we take our relationships with authors very seriously, and do not cancel books lightly. We have published and will continue to publish many challenging books," she added.

She said that sessions had been held with staff which resulted in the publisher coming "to the conclusion that moving forward with publication would not be feasible".

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The statement also shared that the publishing house has decided to return the book rights to Woody.

On Monday Dylan released a statement accusing Hachette of betraying her brother Ronan who penned a book for the company published in October last year named Catch and Kill.

Ronan is a journalist who has documented alleged sexual abuse by powerful men and the book tells the story of Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein – who was jailed for rape last month.

Dylan fumed: "Hachette's publishing of Woody Allen's memoir is deeply upsetting to me personally and an utter betrayal of my brother whose brave reporting, capitalised on by Hachette, gave voice to numerous survivors of sexual assault by powerful men," she wrote.

"This provides yet another example of the profound privilege that power, money and notoriety affords. Hachette's complicity in this should be called out for what it is and they should have to answer for it."

  • Woody Allen sues Amazon in £52m legal battle over dropped movie deal

Ronan also commented ahead of Allen's book being axed saying that Hachette had "concealed the decision from me and its own employees while we were working on Catch and Kill – a book about how powerful men, including Woody Allen, avoid accountability for sexual abuse".

It comes as Woody is battling Amazon in a £52 million legal war over his dropped movie deal – claiming they terminated his contract because of unproven sexual abuse allegations dating back 25 years.

The Hollywood veteran is suing for breach of contract alleging bosses at Amazon Studios reneged on his four-picture deal without good reason.

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According to the Wall Street Journal , Allen alleges they've refused to release his Amazon film, A Rainy Day in New York, even though it's been ready for six months.

In the lawsuit, filed in New York last month, the director claims they nixed the deal over a "25-year old, baseless allegation" from his adopted daughter Dylan.

The lawsuit alleges: "Amazon has tried to excuse its action [dropping the deal] by referencing a 25-year old, baseless allegation against Mr. Allen…

"But that allegation was already well known to Amazon (and the public) before Amazon entered into four separate deals with Mr. Allen — and, in any event it does not provide a basis for Amazon to terminate the contract.

"There simply was no legitimate ground for Amazon to renege on its promises.”

The suit suggests Amazon bosses terminated Allen's contract last summer following the rise of the #MeToo movement.

Representatives for the company are said to have told Allen in a letter: "[The agreement has been cancelled due to] supervening events, including renewed allegations against Mr. Allen…

"His own controversial comments, and the increasing refusal of top talent to work with or be associated with him in any way, all of which have frustrated the purpose of the Agreement.”

Amazon distributed Allen’s last two films, Wonder Wheel and Cafe Society.

The lawsuit is seeking £52 million in damages plus costs.

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