Spanish actor Javier Bardem has condemned what he describes as the ‘public lynching’ of director Woody Allen.
Bardem and his wife Penelope Cruz worked with Allen in 2008 for the comedy film Vicky Cristina Barcelona. Since then, however, more critics have hit out at the director amid the rise of the #MeToo movement and the wider discussion about sexual misconduct in the film industry. More recently, Allen’s new film, A Rainy Day in New York, has been indefinitely scrapped by Amazon Studios.
While the likes of Colin Firth, Greta Gerwig, and Timothée Chalamet publicly criticise Allen, Bardem has described him as a “genius” and condemned the public furore. “At the time I did Vicky Cristina Barcelona, the allegations were already well known for more than 10 years, and two states in the US deemed he was not guilty,” Bardem said while taking part in a masterclass at the Lumiere festival in Lyon, France.
“If the legal situation ever changes, then I’d change my mind. But for now I don’t agree with the public lynching that he’s been receiving, and if Woody Allen called me to work with him again I’d be there tomorrow morning. He’s a genius,” he added.