Woody Allen: Weinstein story is 'sad' but men should be able to 'wink at a woman' without a 'witch hunt'
Woody Allen attends the Premiere of 'Irrational Man' during the 68th annual Cannes Film Festival on May 15, 2015 in Cannes, France (Denis Makarenko / Shutterstock.com)

Director Woody Allen told the BBC this weekend that the situation with disgraced mega-producer Harvey Weinstein is "very sad," but warned against creating a "witch hunt atmosphere" where "every guy in an office who winks at a woman is suddenly having to call a lawyer to defend himself."


Allen -- who has been accused of child molestation by his longtime companion Mia Farrow and who married Soon-Yi Previn when the girl was 19 -- said that for the scores of women alleging Weinstein sexually assaulted or harassed them, in the end, "there are no winners," even when they do come forward.

"No one ever came to me or told me horror stories with any real seriousness," said Allen. "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."

He continued, "The whole Harvey Weinstein thing is very sad for everybody involved. 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."

While some good may come out of the revelations becoming public, he said, "You also 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."

Allen's son Ronan Farrow was one of the journalists who helped Weinstein's accusers get their stories out into the world. His work for NBC encountered resistance at the network, so Farrow finished his project -- in which he interviewed 13 women -- and published at The New Yorker.

On Saturday, Weinstein was removed from the Motion Picture Academy Board of Directors. He has been fired from his company and is reportedly in Europe seeking treatment for "sex addiction."