In Billboard’s cover story naming Selena Gomez as the magazine’s woman of the year, the singer-actress-Netflix teen drama producer was asked how she rationalizes working with Woody Allen, who has been accused of sexually abusing his young daughter.
She had some very interesting things to say! (emphasis mine):
“To be honest, I’m not sure how to answer — not because I’m trying to back away from it,” she said. “[The Weinstein allegations] actually happened right after I had started [on the movie]. They popped up in the midst of it. And that’s something, yes, I had to face and discuss. I stepped back and thought, ‘Wow, the universe works in interesting ways.’”
Wow, it sure is interesting how the universe works. One minute you’re working on a new movie with Woody Allen, whose career was built on making psychosexual movies about old men preying on younger women, and the next, a Hollywood powerbroker is revealed to have built a whole cottage industry around concealing his own sexual misconduct and silencing his victims. You, Selena Gomez, pause for a moment of thoughtful reflection and conclude: “Wow, the universe works in interesting ways.”
Gomez’s whiff echoes the response from Kate Winslet another Allen collaborator, when recently asked to confront Allen’s past in an interview:
“Of course one thinks about it,” she said. “But at the same time, I didn’t know Woody and I don’t know anything about that family. As the actor in the film, you just have to step away and say, I don’t know anything, really, and whether any of it is true or false. Having thought it all through, you put it to one side and just work with the person.”
I don’t even know Woody Allen! And what exactly is truth and knowing, really? It is certainly not for me to decide. I just know Allen is a powerful director whose career has persisted for decades despite these horrific allegations. And so, holding those two thoughts in my mind’s eye—good director, sexual predator—it’s best to just “put it to one side” and work with him anyway. That’s what it means to be a professional like me, Kate Winslet, who’s currently starring in Allen’s latest uncomfortably autobiographical movie.
Wow, the universe works in interesting ways.
Correction: This post originally misattributed a quote from Kate Winslet to Selena Gomez. It’s been updated to correct the error.