It has been confirmed that Selena Gomez will star in Woody Allen’s next film alongside Elle Fanning and Timothée Chamalet (who starred in Interstellar), but her decision to do so was met with great confusion and criticism. Why do stars continue to work with a man who has been accused of monstrous sexual crimes?
Allen, whose famous work includes Vicky Christina Barcelona, Midnight in Paris and Annie Hall, was accused of sexual assault by his adopted daughter Dylan Farrow, who published an open letter in the New York Times in 2014 detailing the abuse. Despite this, legions of Hollywood stars have turned a blind eye and have chosen to work with Allen. Selena, Fanning and Chamalet will follow in the footsteps of Miley Cyrus, Blake Lively, Emma Stone, Kristen Stewart, Kate Winslet, Scarlett Johansson, Cate Blanchett and many more.
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It is clearly a great honour and a privilege to work with such an iconic and greatly-celebrated American filmmaker; his work is praised again and again, screened at festivals and constantly wins awards. His is a name so successful that it completely eclipses the 'molester' tag, and sadly stars will jump at the chance to align themselves with him, as they know it will do wonders for their careers.
Allen’s name has managed to uphold integrity since the sexual abuse allegations came to light, and just like other high-profile men before him (and probably many after him) he has come away with power and respect intact, and is still very in demand.
Donald Trump’s presidential campaign should have died the moment the first of many sexual misconduct claims came to attention, yet he went on to become president. Similarly, Casey Affleck was accused of sexual harassment in 2010 when two female employees working with him on the film I’m Still Here filed separate lawsuits against him. Never mind, though, because he went on to win a Golden Globe, SAG, BAFTA and even the Best Actor Oscar for his film Manchester By The Sea. His career had a sour tinge on it, but it wasn’t ruined, and this happens again and again.
Selena has received great backlash for her decision to work with Allen. The upsetting reality is that she will probably make a great film with him, just like many before her have, and soon the questioning around her decision to do so will be buried, and all that will be seen will be the art.