Woody Allen publisher drops memoir, reigniting debate

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As of March 6, Woody Allen’s publisher, Hachette Publishing Group (HBG), decided to not release his upcoming memoir, “Apropos of Nothing.” However, a division of the HBG company, Grand Central Publishing, will release the memoir, as scheduled, on April 7.

Unsurprisingly, four publishing agencies before HBG turned down his memoir, the Washington Post reported.

HBG explained that they “do not cancel books lightly,” while Grand Central Publishing announced that “Grand Central Publishing believes strongly that there’s a large audience that wants to hear the story of Woody Allen’s life as told by Woody Allen himself. That’s what they’ve chosen to publish,” writes the Rolling Stone.

The day before HBG announced they would not be releasing Allen’s memoir, dozens of HBG employees participated in a walkout. Some employees had automatic email replies that read “We stand in solidarity with Ronan Farrow, Dylan Farrow, and survivors of sexual assault,” NPR writes.

For some background, CNN writes that the controversy surrounding Allen started when his former wife, Mia Farrow, his son, Ronan Farrow and his daughter, Dylan Farrow, accused him of sexual abuse. Allen denies these allegations. Allen is also now married to Mia Farrow’s adopted daughter, Soon-Yi Previn.

Ronan was surprised and saddened to hear that HBG would be initially publishing his father’s book, as he used the same company to publish his book, “Catch and Kill,” in 2019. His book was even “about how powerful men, including Woody Allen, avoid accountability for sexual abuse,” Ronan told Rolling Stone.

Dylan and Ronan also called out HBG for not fact-checking the memoir with them.

Additionally, Ronan interviewed and wrote about more than a dozen women’s accounts of the abuse they suffered from at the hands of Harvey Weinstein over the course of three decades. This can be read here. For this reporting, Ronan was even one of the Pulitzer Prize winners in 2018.

Before these allegations, a memoir would’ve been appropriate given his many awards for his movies, books and so on, but with the rise of the #MeToo movement, the publishing of this memoir feels like a slap in the face and a step backward for survivors of abuse and sexual assault.

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