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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

Go deeper

5 hours ago - World

Biden seeks to reboot U.S. sanctions policy

Sanctions increased under Obama and dramatically under Trump. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

The Biden administration is rethinking the U.S. approach to sanctions after four years of Donald Trump imposing and escalating them.

The big picture: Sanctions are among the most powerful tools the U.S. has to influence its adversaries’ behavior without using force. But they frequently fail to bring down regimes or moderate their behavior, and they can increase the suffering of civilians and resentment of the U.S.

5 hours ago - World

Merkel's farewell spoiled by Poland crisis at EU summit

One last awkward EU "family photo." Photo: John Thys/AFP via Getty Images

Angela Merkel took up her vaunted mantle as Europe's crisis manager for what could be the last time tonight, as she urged the EU to find compromise in its showdown with Poland.

Why it matters: The European Commission has threatened to withhold over $40 billion in pandemic recovery funds after Poland's constitutional tribunal — stacked with loyalists from the ruling right-wing populist party — rejected the principle that EU law has primacy over national law.

Republicans who put it all on the line

Rep. Nancy Mace speaks with reporters after voting to hold Steve Bannon in contempt of Congress. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

A small contingent of House Republicans risked their political futures on Thursday, they say, in the name of constitutional responsibility.

Why it matters: The nine Republicans who voted to hold former Trump aide Steve Bannon in contempt of Congress are now in peril of becoming political pariahs. They've opened themselves up to potential primary challengers and public attacks from their party's kingmaker — former President Trump.