Johansson — who recently topped Forbes’ highest-paid actresses list — told The Hollywood Reporter she stands by the 83-year-old filmmaker, who has long been accused of sexual abuse by his daughter, Dylan Farrow, when she was a child (he has repeatedly denied Farrow’s claims).
“I love Woody,” Johansson told the publication in its latest cover story. “I believe him, and I would work with him anytime.”
Johansson first worked with Allen on the 2005 drama Match Point, and would later lead two more of his films: 2006’s Scoop and 2008’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona (which won costar Penelope Cruz her first Academy Award in 2009). The 34-year-old also said she stays in touch with the director, who recently filed a $68 million lawsuit against Amazon Studios for terminating a four-picture deal and scrapping the release of his last movie, A Rainy Day in New York, due to Farrow’s claims.
“I see Woody whenever I can, and I have had a lot of conversations with him about it,” Johansson added. “I have been very direct with him, and he’s very direct with me. He maintains his innocence, and I believe him.”
“It’s hard because it’s a time where people are very fired up, and understandably,” the actress continued, referencing the current #MeToo landscape. “Things needed to be stirred up, and so people have a lot of passion and a lot of strong feelings and are angry, and rightfully so. It’s an intense time.”
A representative for Johansson did not immediately respond to EW’s request for further comment or clarification on the THR quotes.
In the wake of Farrow’s allegations resurfacing as Allen finished work on A Rainy Day in New York in 2017, stars Timothée Chalamet and Rebecca Hall donated their salaries for working on the film to various charities; Hall’s went to the Time’s Up movement against sexual harassment and abuse, while Chalamet split his between Time’s Up, The LGBT Center in New York, and RAINN (Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network). Selena Gomez, who also appeared in the film, reportedly donated money to Time’s Up that an anonymous source told PEOPLE “far exceeded” her earnings from the film.
Though A Rainy Day in New York has yet to be distributed in the United States, it has slowly rolled out on screens across Europe. Allen is currently working on his next film, tentatively titled Rifkin’s Festival, which shot over the summer in Spain.
In July, Festival stars Gina Gershon and Wallace Shawn also defended Allen at a press conference for the movie.
“It’s a beautiful script; a dream come true…. These are crazy times; one has to analyze the situation and decide how you feel. I’m delighted to be part of this team,” Gershon said, while Shawn added: “He discovered me and there’s a special magic about filming with him once again; it’s something very beautiful. It’s his dream and we walk through that dream.”
Read Johansson’s full THR story here.