Woody Allen sues Amazon for $68M, alleges breach of contract

Woody Allen

Film director Woody Allen has filed a lawsuit against Amazon Studios claiming breach of contract for dropping a four-movie deal and refusing to distribute "A Rainy Day in NY".

The lawsuit, filed in the US District Court in Manhattan, states Amazon Studios' associate general counsel, Ajay Patel, wrote in a June 19 email that they "cannot continue in business" because of the negative publicity.

Based on that conversation, Allen says that he finished A Rainy Day in NY and then started production on other projects because, as he claims to have understood, Amazon was simply pushing the film's release date.

It was back in 2016 that Amazon signed Allen to a five-film deal, a time when the longstanding allegations of sexual assault made against Allen by his adopted daughter Dylan Farrow began to resurface.

As it was previously reported, Dylan Farrow, for many many years has claimed that Allen abused her when she was a child.

According to the suit, the four-picture agreement was terminated in June 2018 without specific reasons provided to Allen.

But Allen's own public image had also suffered potentially career-ending damage.

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In the complaint, Allen said Amazon Studios had already contracted with him and his Gravier Productions to distribute his films "Cafe Society" and "Wonder Wheel" before entering the four-film agreement in August 2017. However, despite completing the film in 2017 and including a somewhat controversial sex scene between a 44-year-old man and 15-year-old girl, Amazon chose to "indefinitely shelve" the film and call time on their partnership with Allen.

Amazon is not commenting at this time.

The suit claims that Amazon executives Jason Ropell and Matt Newman met with Allen's representatives at the end of 2017 when the #MeToo movement was getting more and more attention. Price could not immediately be reached for comment.

The Blue Jasmine director claims Amazon refused to release his film A Rainy Day in NY, alleging the streaming company gave vague reasons for dropping the project and his three other movies from development.

But Amazon refused to distribute the first of Allen's films, "A Rainy Day in NY", the lawsuit alleges. "That is exactly what has happened", Allen's attorney John Quinn of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP said in a statement sent to Law&Crime.

Just Law, who stars in A Rainy Day in New York, previously told The New York Times "it's a awful shame" the film was shelved.

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