Not Happy

What You Should Know About Woody Allen's Feud With Mia and Ronan Farrow

Not everyone was pleased with Woody Allen’s lifetime achievement award. Here’s why.

Riccardo S. Savi / WireImage-Getty Images

Diane Keaton, adorning a tux and large glasses, accepted Woody Allen’s lifetime achievement award at the Golden Globes. She said, “Woody's women can't be compartmentalized. They struggle, they love, they fall apart, they dominate, they're flawed. They are, in fact, the hallmark of Woody's work.” Not everyone, however, was pleased. Mia Farrow and her son Ronan voiced their anger on social media.

Here are five things you should know about this ongoing feud:

1. Who's the Father?

It is unclear who Ronan’s father is. Many people believe Allen to be Ronan’s biological father, as he was born in 1987 during Woody and Mia’s relationship. Last October, Farrow’s paternity had been thrown under the bus. She told Vanity Fair that Frank Sinatra (Farrow’s ex-husband) “might be” the father. Of course, no DNA tests have been done to prove otherwise. Nancy Sinatra Jr. even attests to Ronan being a major part of the Sinatra family.

Ronan’s own reaction? He shook it off casually.

2. The Split

Woody Allen and Mia Farrow split up in 1992. In 1991, Farrow began to suspect something was strange about Allen and Soon-Yi when the family noticed her going out and beginning to dress and behave suggestively. She even discovered nudes of Soon-Yi in Woody’s apartment. When confronted, she said it was her fault “as much as it was Woody’s” and ran out. No one had ever questioned the illegality of it, as she was over the age of consent at the time. Woody describes his falling in love with Soon-Yi as normal, due to her age. Allen said to Time in 1992, “The only thing unusual is that she's Mia's daughter. But she's an adopted daughter and a grown woman. I could have met her at a party or something."

Ironically enough, in 1991, Farrow and Allen were filming Husbands and Wives together. The plot follows a couple who splits as the husband pursues a younger woman around the age of 21.

3. Allegations

Allegations that Allen molested Dylan, his adopted daughter, came out that same year. She was only seven years old, and fears his name and image. She had told Mia “I don’t want him to be my daddy.” Before this case came out, it had been reported by several close friends of the family that Woody had always favored Dylan and had a relationship that was so endearing that it was borderline intimate. She had just wanted to do what her father told her, and didn't want to be in trouble for disrespecting her father. Now 27, she changed her name to Malone.

4. Photoshop

Soon-Yi’s relationship to Ronan Farrow? His adopted sister. His relationship to Woody, as far as he’s concerned? “He’s my father married to my sister,” Ronan has said. “That makes me his son and his brother-in-law.” As far as Andre Previn (Farrow’s second husband) is concerned, Soon-Yi “does not exist.” Their family even went to the length of photoshopping Allen out of photographs, and cropping footage of him from family videos. She was told that she can either choose to be a part of Mia’s family, or be with Woody. Given the ultimatum, she chose Woody, and they are still happily married.

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5. Family History

Mia Farrow was actually married to Frank Sinatra, who she recalls as “the great love of her life,” and that she and Frank “never really split up.” They were married from 1966 to 1968 (she was 19. he was 51), but Sinatra broke off their marriage during her starring role in Rosemary’s Baby. He brought divorce papers to the movie set. In 1969, she married Andre Previn and conceived her first children, twins, with him. They remained together for a decade, and had another biological child and adopted three more. In 1980, Farrow began seeing Allen. During their 12 years together, they adopted eight more and (allegedly) had one biological child, Ronan. Their relationship ended in 1992. She also has a total of 14 children, both adopted and biological.