Woody Allen sues Amazon for dropping A Rainy Day in NY

Woody Allen Amazon

Wood Allen is suing Amazon. Andreas Rentz Getty Images

"Amazon has tried to excuse its action by referencing a 25-year-old, baseless allegation against Mr. Allen, but that allegation was already well known to Amazon (and the public)" before it contracted with Allen, the complaint said.

"There simply was no legitimate ground for Amazon to renege on its promises", the lawsuit says.

Allen, 83, has accused the Amazon unit of backing out in June without cause, after allegations had resurfaced that he had in 1992 molested his adopted daughter Dylan Farrow.

The head of Amazon Studios at the time, Roy Price, told Allen the $1 trillion company wanted to be his "home" for the rest of his career, according to the suit.

But a few months later, as the #MeToo movement was taking off, Amazon Studio executives met with Allen's reps and discussed the "negative publicity and reputational harm" the company had received over its association with pervy producer Harvey Weinstein and its former head Roy Price, who'd just resigned over sexual harassment allegations - then asked to "push back" the A Rainy Day in NY release to 2019. Allen has denied these allegations.

Allen claims that Amazon refuses to release the movie he just made with them, A Rainy Day In New York, despite the fact it has been complete for more than six months.

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According to the suit, Amazon executives Jason Ropell and Matt Newman met with Allen's representatives in December 2017, as the #MeToo movement was gathering steam.

Wood Allen is suing Amazon. The filmmaker is now seeking a minimum guarantee of $68 million for the four unreleased films.

Allegations against Allen were discussed and it was agreed that "A Rainy Day in New York" would be delayed until 2019.

Then - on June 19, 2018 - Allen says he was served a termination notice that stated, "Amazon is terminating the Agreement with respect to each of the Pictures" and that "Amazon does not intend to distribute or otherwise exploit the Pictures in any domestic or global territories". As a result of the renewed scrutiny on the director, the first film in the partnership, Wonder Wheel, had trouble finding willing distributors, and eventually flopped when it finally did see release.

The case is Gravier Productions Inc et al v Amazon Content Services LLC et al, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 19-01169.

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