The saga of Allen v. Farrow continues with a glimpse into the strange and upsetting love triangle of Mia Farrow, her daughter Soon-Yi Previn, and her ex Woody Allen.
While the focus of the HBO docuseries is the allegation that Allen molested his then 7-year-old daughter Dylan Farrow, the full scope of the story can’t be understood without acknowledging his relationship to Mia’s other daughter, Soon-Yi. The couple have now been together almost 30 years, but when news of the affair first broke, they were forced to argue why their relationship wasn’t as creepy and wrong as it seemed from the outside. That included the fact that the affair hadn’t started until she was a legal adult in college, and that the Oscar winner had never been a father figure to the young woman.
In Allen v. Farrow’s second episode, the Rosemary’s Baby star shared that Soon-Yi had never really had any kind of father figure in her life, not even her adopted father, Mia’s ex Andre Previn. She shared:
“When my marriage to Andre broke up, Soon-Yi had only been with us for like a year so. He was very sweet to all of the kids but I don’t think she ever formed a bond with him.”
The actress admitted she struggled to form her own bond with her young daughter, going so far as to bring her to film sets “because I did not want her to be separated from me, even overnight.” She hoped Soon-Yi would eventually “understand that I’m going to be there for her as long as she lives.”
When Mia began dating the director, she explained, he was great with the kids — but Soon-Yi was still distant:
“He took the little ones shopping and bought them airplanes and magic tricks. He started bringing all of them to basketball games. I really encouraged him to go with Soon-Yi, too, because she was really shy.”
“I had noticed him being nicer to Soon-Yi, a lot nicer… I was just really happy because she’d never really had a father.”
The Annie Hall artist confirmed this in his autobiography Apropos of Nothing, the audiobook for which was excerpted in the doc. He recalled:
“I did take her to a game. … As we chatted at the game, I found that I was enjoying her company more than I should have. Cut to some time later, I’m shooting Husbands and Wives, Soon-Yi comes in from college and I screen The Seventh Seal. Bergman’s film ends and we’re alone in my screening room, and quite smoothly, if I do say so myself, I lean in and kiss her.”
The two began an affair which famously culminated in Farrow discovering naked pictures of her daughter in Allen’s apartment. Soon-Yi has remained estranged from her mother since that time, and would later accuse the activist of physical abuse, as did her adopted son Moses Farrow. In the docuseries, Mia admitted to hitting Soon-Yi after finding the photos, saying:
“Toward the end of that first week, after me finding the pictures, I walked into her room and she was sitting on the floor talking on the phone. And I knew she was talking to Woody, the way she hung up fast. And I just pounced on her and I just slapped her on the side of her face and shoulder. And I was just crying and she started crying. I said I was sorry… I’m not proud of that.”
Yikes. Clearly tensions were high for the family at this point, but there’s no excuse for physical violence.
The 76-year-old said:
“I love her so much. And I didn’t ever blame her because she was just a little kid when he came into the family. She was a little girl. We were a family and he was in my home as my partner. And, as such, he had responsibilities, you know. You don’t get to have sex with my children. That isn’t part of the deal.”
It was during the fallout of Woody and Soon-Yi’s affair that the inappropriate incident with Dylan was said to have occurred. The ensuing legal battle will be explored further in upcoming episodes of Allen v. Farrow.
What do YOU think of this strange chapter??
[Image via FayesVision/WENN]