“When I said I felt sad for Harvey Weinstein I thought it was clear the meaning was because he is a sad, sick man,” Allen’s statement reads. “I was surprised it was treated differently. Lest there be any ambiguity, this statement clarifies my intention and feelings.”
“The whole Harvey Weinstein thing is very sad for everybody involved,” Allen told the BBC earlier on Saturday. “Tragic for the poor women that were involved, sad for Harvey that his life is so messed up. There’s no winners in that. It’s just very, very sad and tragic for those poor women that had to go through that.”
Allen added that he hoped the revelations would improve matters, but warned against a “witch hunt.”
“You don’t want it to lead to a witch-hunt atmosphere, a Salem atmosphere, where every guy in an office who winks at a woman is suddenly having to call a lawyer to defend himself. That’s not right either. But sure, you hope that something like this could be transformed into a benefit for people rather than just a sad or tragic situation.”
Allen worked with Weinstein on a number of films but claimed he had never heard any of the allegations of sexual assault.
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“No one ever came to me or told me horror stories with any real seriousness,” Allen said. “And they wouldn’t, because you are not interested in it. You are interested in making your movie. But you do hear a million fanciful rumors all the time. And some turn out to be true and some — many — are just stories about this actress, or that actor.”
Weinstein’s spokeswoman Sallie Hofmeister said earlier this week: “Any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr. Weinstein.”