Dylan Farrow wrote an open letter to the New York Times saying that her father, Woody Allen, sexually abused her, and the women who host “The View” debated the issue on their show.
Veteran journalist Barbara Walters, 84, who created the show, defended the director. "I have rarely seen a father as sensitive, as loving and as caring as Woody and Soon-Yi [are] to these girls," Walters said, referring to the two children the now-married couple has together. "I don't know about Dylan. I can only tell you what I have seen now.”
Dylan, 28, alleged the 78-year-old film legend began sexually abusing her when she was 7 years old. While Walters might believe Allen’s side of the story, the other hosts of the show weren’t convinced.
Dylan has "nothing to gain by coming out and saying this," Jenny McCarthy said on the show. Dylan is a child whom Allen fathered with former lover Mia Farrow.
But Walters had a prompt, frank answer: "She's doing it now because he's up for an [Oscar]. And so the question is: Does your personal life interfere with the awards that you may get?"
That’s when Sherri Shepherd had heard enough.
"We've heard so many cases of people going, 'He was the most wonderful person in the world ... I would have never thought he would've ...'” the Shepherd said. But Walters cut her off. "That's not what I'm saying."
But Shepherd, 46, wasn’t done just yet.
"Barbara," she said, "when you say, 'I'm speaking from what I've seen,' there are so many things that go on behind closed doors. We also know that he was with Soon-Yi when she was very young. Mia had adopted this girl when she was young and Woody was around her. You've also got a man who's got a track record. He liked younger women. So it's not that far off."
This is when the gloves came off among the cohosts. Shepherd and Walters duked it out over whether or not 17 -- Soon-Yi’s age when she began her relationship with Allen -- was old enough. Walters defended it by saying the relationship was “mutual,” but that’s when Shepard said, "It was his stepdaughter he messed around with! That was his stepdaughter!"
In response to Dylan’s open letter, the “Blue Jasmine” director's lawyer, Elkan Abramowitz, issued a statement to CNN on Monday. "It is tragic that after 20 years a story engineered by a vengeful lover resurfaces," Abramowitz told CNN, referring to Mia Farrow. "Even though it was fully vetted and rejected by independent authorities." He added: "The one to blame for Dylan's distress is neither Dylan nor Woody Allen." The iconic director is maintaining that Dylan’s accusations stem from her mother’s disdain for him.
A clip of the argument on “The View” can be seen below:
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