Director Woody Allen. Photo: Andia/UIG via Getty Images

Film director Woody Allen has filed a $68 million lawsuit against Amazon Studios alleging there was a breach of contract when the studio backed out of a four-picture deal and refused to air one of Allen's completed films, Variety reports.

The big picture: The suit claims Amazon backed out of the deal because of allegations that Allen sexually molested his daughter Dylan Farrow in the 1990s, which he has denied. The allegation resurfaced as the #MeToo movement gained momentum in 2017.

According to the suit, Amazon associate general counsel Ajay Patel sent a notice in June 2018 — about two years after the deal was struck — terminating the four-picture agreement. The suit said Patel did not provide a reason for axing the deal or refusing to release Allen's next film, “A Rainy Day in New York.”

  • However, Allen claims he met with Amazon Studios executives Jason Ropell and Matt Newman in December 2017 and discussed "the negative publicity and reputational harm" that had been caused by their association with Harvey Weinstein and then-Amazon Studios head Roy Price, who was terminated due to misconduct allegations.
"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 Amazon entered into four separate deals with Mr. Allen — and, in any event it does not provide a basis for Amazon to terminate the contract. There simply was no legitimate ground for Amazon to renege on its promises."
— The lawsuit states

Go deeper: Read the full lawsuit

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Updated 10 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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In photos: Thousands evacuated as Southern California fire grows

A plane makes a retardant drop on a ridge at the Apple Fire north of Banning in Riverside County, which "doubled in size" Saturday, per KTLA. Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

A massive wildfire that prompted mandatory evacuations in Southern California over the weekend burned 26,450 acres and was 5% contained by Monday afternoon, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said.

The big picture: As California remains an epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic in the U.S., some 15 separate fires are raging across the state. About 7,800 people were under evacuation orders from the Apple Fire, about 75 miles east of Los Angeles, as hundreds of firefighters battled the blaze. CalFire said Monday that a malfunction involving a "diesel-fueled vehicle emitting burning carbon from the exhaust system" started the Apple Fire.

Twitter faces FTC fine of up to $250 million over alleged privacy violations

Photo: Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket

The Federal Trade Commission has accused Twitter of using phone numbers and emails from its users to make targeted ads between 2013 and 2019, Twitter said in an SEC filing published Monday.

Why it matters: Twitter estimates that the FTC's draft complaint, which was sent a few days after its Q2 earnings report, could cost the company between $150 million and $250 million. The complaint is unrelated to the recent Twitter hack involving a bitcoin scam.