Books | May 2, 2019 4:57 pm

Publishers Aren’t Interested in Woody Allen’s Memoir

Prior to #MeToo, the director's manuscript likely would have caused a bidding war

Woody Allen in New York in 2018. (Adrian Edwards/GC Images)
Woody Allen in New York in 2018. (Adrian Edwards/GC Images)
GC Images

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Major publishers don’t want to put out a book chronicling the love and deaths or crimes and misdemeanors in Woody Allen’s life. According to The New York Times, a quartet of major publishers turned down Allen when he approached them about purchasing his memoir.

Prior to the #MeToo movement, Allen’s memoir likely would have led to a bidding war, but it only received indifference or a hard pass when he presented it to the four publishers recently.

Though the prospect of working with Allen — who has been accused of molesting his daughter Dylan Farrow and is married to a woman more than 35 years his junior — is an intriguing subject given his cultural status, some of the publishers declined to even read the full manuscript his agent presented them. The term “toxic” was used when describing the challenges of working with Allen in today’s environment, and it seems publishers were not sold that publishing his memoir would be anything but a commercial risk.

Writer Daphne Merkin knew about the memoir project, but told The Times she hadn’t read it and didn’t know whether it addresses the accusations made against Allen. “He’s not one to set the record straight, but presumably, the memoir is his side of things,” she said. “He’s the kind of person who soldiers on, and someone whose work is his nutrient. Whatever vicissitudes he’s been exposed to, I think he keeps his own counsel about how all this affects and doesn’t affect him.”

The publishing world is not the only portion of the entertainment industry to recently reject Allen. Amazon backed out of a multi-movie distribution deal with him last month.