Woody Allen Soon-Yi
Filmmaker Woody Allen married wife Soon-Yi in 1997. Above, they are pictured June 19, 2009. Getty Images

How did Woody Allen begin a relationship with a woman who used to be his daughter? This question arose once again when Ronan Farrow, his estranged son with ex-girlfriend Mia Farrow, had an article about the director’s alleged sex abuse scandal published in the Hollywood Reporter Wednesday, the same day the filmmaker gave his new movie, “Café Society,” its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France.

As many know, Mia Farrow and Allen’s estranged adopted daughter, Dylan Farrow, alleged he molested the child when she was 7 years old. Allen has vehemently denied the claim, and Mia Farrow didn’t pursue legal justice to protect her daughter, as Ronan Farrow wrote. But the rumored abuse wasn’t the only thing that concerned people. They also recalled Allen’s bizarre relationship with Farrow’s adopted daughter, Soon-Yi Previn, who he married in 1997.

The Previn-Farrow-Allen family tree is an odd one, to say the least. In all, Mia Farrow has 14 children. She adopted Soon-Yi in 1978 with then-husband André Previn, to whom she was married between 1970 and 1979. Soon-Yi was around 7 years old when she was adopted.

Despite being about 35 years older — and her pseudo stepfather — Allen started an affair with Soon-Yi in 1992. Farrow admittedly beat Soon-Yi, reportedly cut up her clothes and banned her from the family home when she found out about it. Soon-Yi was around 21 years old at the time the relationship began.

Even though Allen was accused of grooming and molesting Soon-Yi, the way he allegedly did with adopted daughter Dylan Farrow, both he and Soon-Yi have denied the accusation. In fact, Soon-Yi said in a Time magazine interview in 1992 that it was “laughable” to consider Allen as a paternal figure.

“To think that Woody was in any way a father or stepfather to me is laughable,” Soon-Yi said. “My parents are Andre Previn and Mia, but obviously they’re not even my real parents. I came to America when I was 7. I was never remotely close to Woody.”

However, Allen, now 80, contradicted her statement during an NPR interview last year. “I’m 35 years older, and, somehow, through no fault of mine or hers, the dynamic worked. I was paternal. She responded to someone paternal,” he said. “She deferred to me, and I was happy to give her an enormous amount of decision-making just as a gift and let her take charge of so many things.” He continued: “She flourished. It was just a good luck thing.”

Follow me on Twitter @mariamzzarella