Greta Gerwig said vague words when asked if she regrets working with Woody Allen

75th Golden Globe Awards

Since September, I’ve been keeping my eye on Greta Gerwig’s Oscar campaign, and I’ve been keeping my eye on what seems like a not-so-subtle campaign to smear Greta and paint her as an anti-Semite and now a “hypocrite” who talks out of both sides of her mouth. Greta wrote and directed Lady Bird, which picked up the Best Comedy/Musical Golden Globe despite the fact that the HFPA snubbed Gerwig for a directing nomination (only dudes were nominated for Best Director) and they gave the Screenplay Globe to the white guy who repeatedly used the n-word in his screenplay. It was a complicated evening.

When Greta was in the press room after Lady Bird’s big win at the Globes, she was asked about her role in the 2012 Woody Allen film, To Rome with Love. Keep in mind: Dylan Farrow only spoke out about being abused by Woody (in her childhood) in February 2014. I’m not saying every actor who has ever worked with Woody deserves absolution, but before February 2014, I really don’t believe that many actors truly knew the extent of the accusations against Woody by Dylan. Sure, they knew he was a profoundly creepy man who had an affair with (and married) his step-daughter and wrote the same creepy storylines over and over. But most people were in the dark about just what Dylan had accused him of. Anyway, Greta was asked about working with Woody, because of course SHE was and Justin Timberlake wasn’t, right? That being said, Greta’s answer sucked.

Greta Gerwig did her best to side-step a question about working with Woody Allen while answering questions in the press room at the Golden Globe Awards on Sunday night. When asked if she regretted working with Allen on the 2012 film To Rome with Love following molestation accusations against the famed director, Gerwig said, “Well, you know, I’m so thrilled to be here tonight as a writer and director and creator, and to be making my own movies and putting that forth,” she said, visibly flustered. “You know, it’s something that I’ve thought deeply about and I care deeply about, and I haven’t had an opportunity to have an in-depth discussion where I come down on one side or the other…But it’s something I definitely take to heart,” she continued. “My job right now I think is to occupy the position of a writer and director, and to be that person, and to tell those stories.”

[From People]

It’s a really stupid answer, and the Oscar consultant tasked with shepherding Lady Bird through the awards season really needs to pull Gerwig aside and tell her that Woody Allen has no Hollywood constituency at this point – not counting ride-or-die Kate Winslet – and that publicly saying “I regret working with Woody” will not offend anyone or hurt her Oscar chances. In fact, saying that will help her Oscar chances.

Now, all that being said… it’s clear to me now that journalists and industry professionals and Dylan Farrow herself will only hold actresses and not actors accountable for working with Woody. Justin Timberlake got a pass, right? Steve Carell gets a pass. Joaquin Phoenix got a pass from everyone too, even though all of those dudes worked with Woody AFTER Dylan went public. It’s not that Joaquin, Justin Timberlake and Steve Carell even had any moments where they say something stupid in response to a question about Woody Allen either – because journalists never ask the men. But Greta Gerwig? Of course a woman gets the question. And as I said, fair enough, criticize her for talking out of both sides of her mouth. But criticize Justin Timberlake too, and criticize the fact that he stood there with a #MeToo button and ZERO journalists asked him one question about working with Woody.

75th Annual Golden Globe Awards - Press room

Photos courtesy of WENN.

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66 Responses to “Greta Gerwig said vague words when asked if she regrets working with Woody Allen”

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  1. MostlyMegan says:

    I love Gerwig’s work, but as a professional, she should have been much better prepared for this question, which was always going to come up considering the tenor of the Globe’s this year and the focus on abuse of women. I am glad the question was asked. She should have said, ‘Abuse in any form is reprehensible and we need to stand with victims and believe women. Had I known then what I know now, I would have made a different decision.”

    • Esmom says:

      Yeah, it’s not that hard to come up with something firm to shut the question down. She’s clearly fearful of losing the status she’s gained in the industry.

    • Nicole says:

      Right? Its not that hard. Ellen Page had the most eloquent essay written about working with Allen. I’m okay with actresses and actors having a reckoning or moment to realize that a career move they made years ago was not okay. But its the silence, constant defense or side stepping that makes me want to not support them going forward.
      Also please notice minus a few guys, the men were completely silent last night. And that’s my issue…wearing black or a button isnt activism

    • Amy says:

      Maybe she didn’t remember the exact timeline of what became public when. Your answer would have been awesome, but maybe she wasn’t remembering off the top of her head that she worked with him 2 years BEFORE dylan came out with her story. Or maybe she was trying to deflect from the fact that she worked with him at all at any time bc he’s always been problematic and gross.

      Re: why are women asked these questions and not men? Women started this campaign. We started the whole conversation and we are the ones who have the most to gain by making me too and times up successful. If you are going to wear all black, this showing you support and are a part of the activism and campaign, then you should also be able to speak clearly on the topic and answer questions in a way that you wish men would answer them (by taking responsibility, saying what happened was wrong, and being excited that now you don’t feel like you have to tolerate grossness from men in Hollywood in order to work). I think we women need to model the behavior and the conversation that we want from men. If women who are supposedly in the movement (because they’re wearing black to the globes), don’t even know what to properly say about Woody Allen or any other predator, then how do we expect anything to change? How do we expect men to speak about it when the women ambassadors of the movement can’t?

    • wendy says:

      Isn’t that somewhat the point? She has made it this far in a male dominated industry, is up for some fairly major awards…and STILL does not feel confident enough in her own accomplishments to make a definitive statement.

      We are saying she ‘should’ have hired a publicist or someone to help her answer the question better…maybe this IS an honest answer? I am conflicted, I have more information, I want to be better, but I am finally being acknowledged????????

      Can we at least acknowledge that women in the industry, while taking more flak, getting more invasive questions, etc…have long been at a disadvantage and are precariously trying to hold what little power, access, fame etc. that they have acquired?

  2. Esmom says:

    I really liked her until this fall, when I was sort of appalled at the same sort of sidestepping she tried to do in an interview with Terri Gross, who asked her in several different ways about her oft-professed love of Woody Allen. Her hemming and hawing basically boiled down to “I don’t want to say the wrong thing.”

    • Pix says:

      I listened to this interview too and really felt her answer was so thoughtful, although clearly clumsy. I felt for her because she seemed to say lets talk about my work and accomplishment in this moment- let’s not make this about a male director who had nothing to do with the movie. She didn’t want the interview to boil down to her comments about a man she worked with years ago. And she’s right. Whatever her comment about Allen becomes the story and her work becomes second. She is not being eloquent, but I do believe she is making a point.

    • KatieBo says:

      ” haven’t had an opportunity to have an in-depth discussion where I come down on one side or the other…”

      About what? The merits of child molestation vs pissing off people who still like Woody Allen? This is the same kind of “well we don’t REALLY know” logic that Kate Winslet has been spewing all awards season.


  3. LadyT says:

    They asked her in the press room when her show has just won- clearly off topic- but no one stepped up to ask Timberlake. That really bugs me.

    • Falum says:

      Yup. I am sick of women being answerable for men’s actions. ENOUGH!! Dylan needs to see she is part of the problem. Too many people mindlessly cheering anything she says on.

    • Red says:

      To be fair, Justin isn’t nominated for anything. He was only there because of his wife. They should have asked James Franco about trying to sleep with a 17 year old a few years ago.

      • Falum says:

        Oops i forgot about that. Did he know she was only 17 though?

      • Nicole says:

        He did. I went to NYU when he was a professor there. He was known for trying to pick up freshmen on campus. And it was more than one 17 year old.
        Franco is about to have his moment soon. The receipts on him are going to drop

      • QueenB says:

        Franco is next. Twitter is full of women calling him out and talking about his behaviour.

      • KBB says:

        She told him she was 17 and he asked if he should “rent a room.” Then she said she didn’t believe it was him and he sent her a photo of himself holding a piece of paper with her name written on it. He was badgering her with questions.

        She was only a month away from turning 18, but she also told him she had exams coming up and that she was in NY with her Mom. He seemed more concerned with whether or not she was single than how young she was.

        Age of consent in NY is 17, so it wasn’t technically illegal, but he was 35 and age of consent in CA is 18.

    • MostlyMegan says:

      This is not holding women to blame for mens’ actions. The question speaks to an industry that has long protected abusers through silence and complicity – because people in an industry based on relationships are attracted to the power and legacy of the likes of Allen and (formerly) Weinstein. Saying nothing says so much

    • sa says:

      If they asked her in the press room after she won, then maybe they didn’t have that opportunity to ask Timberlake? (sure, they could have asked on the red carpet, but I’m assuming she also wasn’t asked on the red carpet?). But Ewan McGregor also won, so was he asked in the press room about working with both Woody Allen and Roman Polanski? I’m assuming he was not asked because I haven’t heard about it.

      I am very pro-asking these questions, in any and every setting. If you want to support and promote a known sexual predator, then you should be comfortable defending that position. So I fully support whoever asked Gerwig. My view is that every interview setting with every man or woman that works with Woody Allen or Roman Polanski needs to start with those questions. Make them constantly defend the association, don’t let anyone forget that they support a sexual predator who preys on children. As far as I’m concerned, if Gerwig wins an Oscar, supporting Woody Allen should be the first question (again, not just for her, but for ALL of them).

      Having said that, I’m willing to move on and not necessarily hold it against those that realize it was a mistake. Ellen Page and a couple of others have indicated that they regret working with Woody Allen and so all that I said above, about how this should always be the first question, doesn’t really apply to them. I personally also have never held it against those that are just looking for their next job. It’s those with options that I hold it against.

  4. littlemissnaughty says:

    It wasn’t a great answer and there is no excuse for not having a good one at this point. Especially if you’re wearing black to show solidarity. As for her working with him in the first place? I don’t see how Greta Gerwig in 2012 could’ve passed up that opportunity. I also believe that five years ago many many people were not aware of the extent of the abuse WA committed.

    But how do you still not know how you feel about it? And who will ask Colin Firth to explain his involvement in Magic in the Moonlight? It’s not like he sacrificed his integrity for a good film either.

  5. Really says:

    I think the movimento is great and all but I kind of agree with the point “… means nothing if you are not willing to denounce these in power…”

  6. JKL says:

    Not to mention Chalamet, who worked with him this year. At this point I’d be mildly surprised if that film gets released

  7. Jussie says:

    He was a huge influence on her work. She said (a long time ago) that his films were the main thing that led her to acting. His work ties into hers because he was an inspiration for her and it shows. So do think her thoughts are probably a little too complicated to be addressed on the red carpet. I would like to see her address it in a proper interview though.

    • Jayna says:

      This. He was a huge influence on her work and an inspiration for the type of movies she is in and writes. So it is complicated.

      BUT I really don’t think she has to address it if she doesn’t want to.

    • lucy2 says:

      I get that, but is it impossible to say that his work was a great influence AND there should be no tolerance for abuse and she will not work with him again?

      • Jussie says:

        Of course, but I’m not sure last night was the time to in any way credit his influence, not in a 2 minute red carpet or press room interview, and it’s hard for her specifically to talk about him without acknowledging his influence.

        Regular people completely unconnected to these predators work can’t agree on how their old work should be handled eg. is it still ok to enjoy a favourite song or film if it’s now tainted. That’s got to be a much more complicated thought process when the influence of that tainted work is evident in your own. I don’t blame her for not wanting to get into it with reporters when she doesn’t have time to fully explain her thoughts.

    • Tiffany says:

      That will explain why I don’t like her and avoid her work like the plague.

      I just don’t think she is all that talented. I hate Allen’s neurotic behind as well.

  8. Miles says:

    Kaiser thank you so much for bringing up a point that’s irked me in all of this. Only certain people are being called out (and it’s over and over and over again) and questioned (hint none of them are men) for working with people like Allen but as I said in another post if you’re going to call out some people then you better have a seat, get comfortable and call everyone out. Because they’ve all worked with rapists. But apparently only certain victims and activists need to be perfect with no flaws in their pasts. I mean since we are talking about Allen, when is Mia Farrow going to be held accountable for being abusive and supporting Roman Polanski in the court of law. And this is someone who Dylan supports so isn’t she also a hypocrite for standing by an abuser and enabler? See how big of a mess this is.

  9. Karen says:

    People who worked with Allen or Polanski or supported either of them, but wore black and all as “form of protest” at GG are hilarious, I mean hypocricy at its finest. Protest my ass.

  10. Mia4s says:

    Sigh…sorry I am just not here for this: “do you regret it?! Apologize!!” narrative. I don’t care. We cannot know if it’s genuine or just, “well I better do it to shut these people up. Plus then I can retweet the positive tweets I get.” It’s theatre and click bait and meaningless and a waste of time.

    I am also once again being driven crazy by the fact that we are once again focused on the same Allen story as for the past 30 years and have already stopped talking about MULTIPLE allegations against James Franco. No wonder Hollywood loves Allen, he’s the perfect distraction.

    • LP says:

      @MIA4S: I’m sure many of the people speaking out in the current climate are insincere/doing it for positive attention- just look at the Ivanka Trump post! With that being said, it is not meaningless to confront complicit on their complicity. What other way is there to acknowledge a problem (ie, Woody Allen)? Silence? There were rumors about Weinstein for YEARS and nothing changed until someone spoke out. Then others did, and others, then changes were made at a financial level, and the police are investigating. For Allen, and for other predators, it has to start somewhere.

    • Slowsnow says:

      Ha @Mia4s, we can’t agree on WW but I totally agree with you on this. Statements are such empty garbage right now and many people profit from being on the right side after those who fought to create the right side… Allen keeps coming back but many other things are swept under the rug as you say. And how can you define a genuine, sincere apology unless it comes spontaneously like Ellen Page’s?

  11. c. Remm says:

    Honestly, this makes me mad. A director makes a good movie, delivers good work and gets honoured for it with an award. This is the case in all film festivals, apart from the ones in the so called land of the free, the US of A. Here you have to have a decent relationship and you have to say the right words about subjects or people, which have nothing to do with the film you made. I know, the US of A like to claim to have the best movies in the world and the Oscar is the top award of all awards, but it isn’t, the Oscar means nothing, because the movie is not jugded. I wonder when they start demanding that an Oscar contender has to belong to the right political party and to kiss the Fuehrers arse.

  12. Karen says:

    Dylan actually wrote an article calling out both male and female actors for dressing in black for GG, but still working with Allen:

    Quote from it:
    “I struggle with how a powerful force like Justin Timberlake can claim to be in awe of the strength of women and stand with them at this #MeToo moment and then in the next breath say that working with Woody Allen is a ‘dream come true.’”

    • Miles says:

      Is Dylan going to also write an article about how she supports Mia Farrow, a women who abused her adopted son and supported Roman Polanski in court? This is like when Rose McGowan gets on twitter to call people out for working with Weinstein but then never talks about how she worked with and defended a convicted rapist.

      • Karen says:

        My post was an answer to the topic itself which claimed:

        “Now, all that being said… it’s clear to me now that journalists and industry professionals and Dylan Farrow herself will only hold actresses and not actors accountable for working with Woody.”

        Which is simply not true, because Dylan Farrow herself called out both male and female actors.

      • magnoliarose says:

        People can talk about one issue at a time.
        Attacking Dylan about her mother is wrong. Woody Allen’s smear machine went into overdrive, and it isn’t Dylan’s job to be perfection.
        If someone talks on and on about Woody Allen in interviews, then they will be asked about him. Fair or not. It wasn’t a hard question.

      • Miles says:

        @MAGNOLIAROSE why is “attacking” (it’s not actually attacking. More so asking) Dylan for continuing to support her mother, an abuser and enabler, wrong but attacking celebs who worked with an abuser fair game? If you’re going to say she’s a victim well so are the majority of the women who are actively engaged in this campaign and who have worked with abusers and rapists. But this goes back to the industry as a whole. At some point in time, anyone of these people worked with an abuser. The real issue is that they were too afraid to say anything about it. The whole point of the TIMESUP movement was to end this silence, not vilify and go after every single person who has worked with or has had a relationship with an abuser. Not only does that take away from the movement, it literally shifts the conversation away from the abusers.

      • magnoliarose says:

        Miles, I don’t believe in attacking Greta either but I do think it is worth asking her the question since she said he was an inspiration.
        I agree with a lot of what you say, but I am not sold on Mia as an abuser at this point. But she isn’t winning any mother of the year awards either. If she were my friend I would have some sharp opinions but Dylan is the only one who could answer that.
        I believe she is right to keep bringing the focus on Allen if only to shame people from working with him again.
        It is worth thinking about so that we don’t become lax and slide back into acceptance. Greta shouldn’t be punished in any way for what she did in the past.

    • Div says:

      I feel for Dylan and as a victim I think she’s entitled to say what she wants (I blame journalists for not going after the men and studios in an equal opportunity way, not her). That said, I disagree with your point. I’ve read all that she’s written/tweeted and while she occasionally mentions men she focuses on women 90% of the time.

      • Karen says:

        The OP didn’t say that Dylan rarely mentioned men, OP said Dylan would only talk about women and I provided the link that proves the opposite, so I don’t understand why you disagree tbh.

    • Miles says:

      So she called out one man out of the hundreds who have worked with Woody Allen but she has no problem continually going after the women. But like I said she’s also being a hypocrite by continuing to support an abuser and an enabler. She wants others to condemn her abuser but then stands by an abuser. If we are holding people accountable, then she shouldn’t get a pass either. If the people who worked with Allen and other rapists in the past are part of the problem then Dylan is part of the problem as well for standing by an abuser herself. That’s why I’m not here for the lists of people who need to apologize otherwise they can’t talk about the movement because that list includes a small group of people and yet is missing thousands of names that don’t get brought up.

      • Karen says:

        “So she called out one man out”

        Louis CK? Alec Baldwin?

      • Miles says:

        When did she call out either one of them for working with Allen? Again her gripe is that these women plus JT are a part of TIMESUP but were in movies with Allen in the past and yet she considers herself part of the movement but is supporting an abuser and enabler as we speak. I understand she’s a victim and she deserves support but until she condemns Mia Farrow, she is hypocritical herself. She wants others to do for her what she won’t do for another victim/victims (Moses and Polanski’s victims).

      • Karen says:

        She named them both in her 2014 published letter. It was in NY Times I believe.

  13. QueenB says:

    ” I haven’t had an opportunity to have an in-depth discussion where I come down on one side or the other”

    I see where she is coming from. Its so hard to pick a side in this. Do I want to work with a predator? Do I care more about my career than about victims? Difficult to come down on one side or the other…

    Also Dylan Farrow did call out the men, too.

    • Karen says:

      “Do I want to work with a predator? Do I care more about my career than about victims? Difficult to come down on one side or the other…”

      That’s difficult? Hm…..Well, if you worked with Allen and run around circles when answering questions about working with him or praise him, then you clearly came down on one side. Allen’s side.

  14. FishBeard says:

    I think Dylan has called out both actors and actresses? I’ve seen a few of her tweets and I believe that her letter in 2014 did the same as well.

    I do hate that people focus on the actresses when it comes to working with Woody, especially the younger ones, like Kristen Stewart and Emma Stone. It’s really only women who could jeopardize their careers by voicing their regrets. It doesn’t mean we shouldn’t criticize the actors that enable Woody, but why aren’t the production studios being held accountable? They have far more power than actresses, and if we’ve learned anything in the last few months, it’s that there are still rigid power dynamics which impact women’s choices.

  15. Leducduswaz says:

    At this point, I’m starting to wonder how many men in the industry have quietly had a word with the press (or had someone in their camp do it) and let it be known that they won’t be answering these types of questions. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what I would do if I was a famous guy right now. As far as I can see it, there’s only a few reasons why so many of them are staying silent. 1- They’ve got skeletons in their closets themselves and are afraid of tempting fate. 2- They haven’t personally done anything but have friends and business contacts who have and they don’t want to burn their paychecks. 3- They feel that if they haven’t personally done anything, it’s not really their problem. 4- Theyve been victims themselves but they’ve internalized so many toxic ideas about what a “real man” is that they’ll never allow themselves to be seen as victims. The first three groups I have no sympathy for, and I wouldn’t care if they disappeared and got replaced by newcomers who’ll never try anything because they know they can’t get away with it anymore. The last group is who I can actually feel bad for, and in a way I can understand where they’re coming from. And I’ve got the impression that it’s way bigger than we’ll ever know because they won’t ever talk about it. I think that for every Terry Crews or Anthony Rapp there’s probably at least a dozen guys we don’t know about. I just hope that at least one person that they know knows, and that they know that they’re not alone.

    Tl;dr some men are staying silent because they’re victims too. And that’s not meant in a #notallmen way. I’m just a guy with a #metoo story who recognizes that it happens to us too.

  16. Really says:

    And let’s talk about Gary Oldman standing ovation about Oprah’s speech, how ironic was that, wearing black and so thoughtful of victims , a real feminist like Harvey was on the women march

  17. manta says:

    I find it quite strange to pick 2014 as some before/after benchmark.
    Most people were in the dark about what he was accused of? For real?
    These people were either not born in the 90s or have memory problem, because I perfectly remember the gigantic mess of a custody battle it was, the documents explaining why he avoided charges etc…
    And people in the industry were in the dark about all of this prior 2014?

    • lucy2 says:

      For me, that is a benchmark.
      Back in the 90s I was in high school, knew nothing about him except that he made movies and creepily married his stepdaughter, and there was a scandal that eventually died down in the press. I personally don’t remember ever learning about Dylan’s abuse until the 2014 publication. I think it’s possible that others my age and younger, or those who didn’t follow the US news, weren’t as aware.
      But in this day and age, I think pretty much everyone saw the 2014 publication, so I feel like now, anyone being aware of that and choosing to still work with him should be questioned why.

    • Marianne says:

      Honestly no. I knew he married his step daughter, but knew nothing else. That being said, maybe there was more people in the business who knew more because they run in the same social circles…but overall, no i dont think a lot of people would have known.

  18. dumbledork says:

    It might have been brought up here or on another thread, but people did drag Timberlake pretty hard on his Twitter after he posted that dumb pic of how hot he thought his wife looked. It was hilarious actually, and finally nice to see the guys get the same crap that the women have been getting for so long. But that’s some of the press for you. Tiptoe around the men, yet find ways to blame misogyny on the women.

  19. Otaku Fairy says:

    I definitely think she should have at least offered some kind of statement that condemned Woody Allen’s abuse and showed support for Dylan. Part of the reason why she didn’t apologize for having worked with him back in 2012 is probably not only because she didn’t know about him molesting Dylan back then, but because that apology would be taken as a promise that nobody she works with moving forward would be an abuser. I do wonder what Sex Predadorgate has women in the entertainment industry or politics thinking about all the men they’ve worked with in their careers right now?

  20. TrixC says:

    It was a lame answer, but it also irritates me that she’s a woman who has directed one of the best films of the year, at an event where she might expect to be honoured by her peers, and all the focus is on a decision she made years ago, at a different point in her career. None of the male directors get asked these types of questions.

    • Karen says:

      But did any of those directors work with Allen like she did? Though they could have asked del Toro about his support of Polanski since he signed that petition.

  21. Pandy says:

    I wonder if Dylan only calls out women because she doesn’t expect anything better from men?

  22. JosieH says:

    “But Greta Gerwig? Of course a woman gets the question.”

    Uh, she was in the press room because she won a Golden Globe. Did Justin Timberlake win something and I missed it? No? Then your criticism is silly.

  23. julie says:

    Ugh. Here was a tremendous opportunity to denounce, to condemn an known assaulter and she retreats. Truly pathetic. Also, Lady Bird is incredibly overrated.

  24. Wo says:

    Timothee chamelet is an Oscar front runner and just made a movie with Woody Allen. No one asks him about it. Greta Gerwig is an Oscar front runner and constantly gets asked about making a movie with Allen years ago. Gee, I wonder why.