So, you think Bollywood scandals are bad? You feel like repeatedly venting your angst on social media at #MeToo allegations and cries of nepotism. Well, you've seen and heard nothing yet. Welcome to Hollywood – the “land of scandals” so sordid and gossip so putrid that you'll end up thanking your lucky stars that you live in a country where you feel dear, old Bollywood is the yardstick of damnation. To put some perspective on what we're referring to, let's take you on a trip down memory lane in today's section of 'Hollywood Scandal' albeit not the nostalgic kind, where 4-time Oscar Winner and 16-time Oscar nominee Woody Allen had married his partner, Mia Farrow's – another Hollywood legend – adopted daughter (from a prior relationship), Soon-Yi Previn (Korean descent), who's 35 years younger to him, after which he was also accused of sexually abusing the couple's own adopted daughter, Dylan Farrow, then aged seven.
It so happens that filmmaker and occasional actor Woody Allen and Mia Farrow had entered into a relationship with actress Mia Farrow in 1980. The two also collaborated on as many as thirteen films over a decade-long period. However, things took a drastic turn in their relationship when Woody Allen made it public in 1992 that he was romantically involved with Soon-Yi Previn, then 21 years old, and the latter never denied it. Five years later, the two even made it official by tying the knot. Soon-Yi Previn has declared in several interviews and magazine articles that Woody was never a father figure to her and she never had any such dealing with him that could be seen as a father-daughter bond.
In fact, Mia Farrow had come to know of their relationship only after finding nude photographs of her adopted daughter in Woody Allen's home, after which the latter disclosed that they were taken two weeks after he had first had sex with Soon-Yi Previn. Incensed by the discovery, Mia immediately ended things with Woody. While both the filmmaker and Previn claim that they did nothing wrong and merely followed their heart and whatever happened was well within their legal right, everybody has looked at it differently from an ethical standpoint over the years.
However, that's not the half of it. Eight months after news of the scandalous relationship broke out, Dylan Farrow, Woody and Mia Farrow's adopted daughter, whom they took into their home in 1985, came out with severe sexual abuse allegations against her father. Woody claimed that Mia manipulated Dylan to concoct the allegations to spite him for cheating on her with her elder daughter.
The Connecticut State Attorney investigated the case, but did not press charges, and the Connecticut State Police then referred it to the Child Sexual Abuse Clinic of Yale, New Haven Hospital, which found no evidence of sexual abuse in the case, deducing that the whole story was likely “coached or influenced” by Mia Farrow. However, Woody lost a custody hearing for all his three kids – he and Mia share another adopted boy, Moses, and a biological child, Satchel – though the judge made it clear that the allegations of “sexual abuse had not been proven”.
The filmmaker later got limited visitation rights for Moses and Satchel, but his relationship with Dylan remains strained as she still claims that her father had sexually molested her, though they've been constant alterations in her narrative from the time she had first revealed the damning allegations back in 1992.
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