Since his deal with Amazon hit a speedbump with the release of the critically maligned TV series “Crisis in Six Scenes” in 2016, Woody Allen’s relationship with the streamer has gone from bad to worse. The legendary filmmaker sued Amazon Studios today for alleged breach of contract, Business Insider reports.
“The suit alleges that Amazon refused to release Allen’s latest movie, ‘A Rainy Day in New York,’ and terminated its four-movie production-and-distribution contract with him without cause,” the story reports. “Allen is seeking more than $68 million in damages, the suit says.”
The lawsuit alleges that Amazon pulled the plug on the deal in June after an allegation resurfaced that Allen had molested his adopted daughter Dylan Farrow.
“In an interview with ‘CBS This Morning’ in early 2018, Farrow again accused Allen of molesting her in 1992, when she was 7 years old. Allen has denied the allegation,” Business Insider reports, noting that the allegation resurfaced amid the #MeToo movement.
“The suit says the relationship between Allen and Amazon began to get shaky in late 2017 when Roy Price resigned as president of Amazon Studios following sexual-harassment allegations against him,” the report adds. “It says that in December 2017, Amazon executives met with Allen’s representatives to discuss the negative publicity following the allegations against Price and that the next month Allen and Amazon agreed to push the release of ‘A Rainy Day in New York’ to 2019.”
Along with the six-episode comedy “Crisis in Six Scenes” — a widely panned miniseries that has a grim 17% average “Tomatometer” rating on Rotten Tomatoes — Allen has released his two most recent feature films, “Cafe Society” and “Wonder Wheel,” through Amazon.
But Amazon reportedly sent the filmmaker’s production company, Gravier, a termination notice last June. The email, which is included in the suit, says in part: “Amazon does not intend to distribute or otherwise exploit the Pictures in any domestic or international territories. And Gravier must therefore undertake immediately to make alternative distribution arrangements and otherwise mitigate any damages it may claim on account of Amazon’s termination.”
Business Insider adds: “The suit says that Amazon said it terminated its contract with Allen because, along with the molestation allegation against him, it became ‘impracticable’ to work with him amid ‘the increasing refusal of top talent to work with or be associated with him in any way.'”