Ronan Farrow, son of Woody Allen, is calling out those stars like Kristen Stewart and Blake Lively who still work with his father despite allegations that he sexually abused his adopted daughter, Farrow's sister, Dylan, when she was age seven.
In an essay for The Hollywood Reporter, Farrow writes that he is speaking out now about Allen, before the director's latest movie Café Society premieres at Cannes, because he knows no one else will.
"They can trust that the press won't ask them the tough questions," Farrow wrote of the actors walking the red carpet. "It's not the time, it's not the place, it's just not done."
But, Farrow warns against that kind of silence from celebrities, writing it "isn't just wrong. It's dangerous."
He continued, "It sends a message to victims that it's not worth the anguish of coming forward. It sends a message about who we are as a society, what we'll overlook, who we'll ignore, who matters and who doesn't."
In his letter, Farrow seems to echo his sister, Dylan's message in her 2014 open letter to the New York Times, which had her, for the first time, detailing the allegations against Allen in her own words. She talked about Hollywood's silence and how it would hurt other victims of sexual assault in the future.
"What if it had been your child, Cate Blanchett? Louis C.K.? Alec Baldwin?" Dylan wrote. "What if it had been you, Emma Stone? Or you, Scarlett Johansson? You knew me when I was a little girl, Diane Keaton. Have you forgotten me?"
Farrow accuses the "old-school media's slow evolution" of doing just that by allowing Allen to keep working with very little questions asked. Even giving him more accolades despite Dylan's allegations.
"Amazon paid millions to work with Woody Allen, bankrolling a new series and film," Farrow wrote. "Actors, including some I admire greatly, continue to line up to star in his movies."
While Farrow says actors will tell him that it's not personal, he disagrees, writing, "It hurts my sister every time one of her heroes like Louis C.K., or a star her age, like Miley Cyrus, works with Woody Allen. Personal is exactly what it is — for my sister, and for women everywhere with allegations of sexual assault that have never been vindicated by a conviction."
In the piece, Farrow writes that women with allegations do not always feel they can bring charges against their assaulter because the cards are stacked against them. Especially when these women are going up against powerful men. Farrow mentions Bill Cosby, whose initial accusers were silenced by him and the media who chose to ignore the allegations. Now, over 50 women have come forward against him.
But, in Farrow's opinion, this is when the media can step in and level the playing field. They can help by reporting the facts and not taking sides — no matter how powerful one of the players may be. They can ask the tough questions.
"A reporter's role isn't to carry water for those women," Farrow said. "But it is our obligation to include the facts, and to take them seriously. Sometimes, we're the only ones who can play that role.
"We are witnessing a sea change in how we talk about sexual assault and abuse," Farrow added. "But there is more work to do to build a culture where women like my sister are no longer treated as if they are invisible. It's time to ask some hard questions."
In a recent interview with Variety, Stewart, who stars in Café Society, talked about Dylan Farrow's allegations against Allen, saying she was aware and did have "concerns" about working with Allen. But in the end, she said a conversation with her co-star Jesse Eisenberg ultimately led her to do the film.
"At the end of the day, Jesse and I talked about this. If we were persecuted for the amount of shit that’s been said about us that’s not true, our lives would be over,” Stewart said. “The experience of making the movie was so outside of that, it was fruitful for the two of us to go on with it.”
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