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Hachette workers protest publication of Woody Allen memoir

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New York (AFP)

Dozens of employees of a Hachette subsidiary in New York staged a walkout Thursday in protest at the company's decision to publish Woody Allen's autobiography, trade magazine Publishers Weekly said.

The Oscar-winning filmmaker behind "Annie Hall" and "Manhattan" has long been accused of molesting his adoptive daughter Dylan Farrow when she was seven years old in the early 1990s.

The 84-year-old was cleared of the charges, first leveled by his then-partner Mia Farrow, after two separate months-long investigations, and has consistently denied the abuse. But Dylan, now an adult, maintains she was molested.

Thursday's protest in front of Grand Central Publishing headquarters follows Allen's son Ronan Farrow -- who has been very critical of his father -- denounced the decision to publish the memoir.

"This afternoon, Grand Central Publishing employees are walking out of the Hachette New York office in protest of the publication of Woody Allen's memoir," Grand Central employees said in an email, Publishers Weekly reported.

"We stand in solidarity with Ronan Farrow, Dylan Farrow, and survivors of sexual assault."

Hachette group employee Elece Green said she was taking part in the demonstration.

"As an employee of Hachette Book Group and in support of my colleagues at Little, Brown and survivors of sexual assault, I am walking out of the New York office this afternoon," she tweeted.

Ronan Farrow said Tuesday he would no longer work with Hachette, whose subsidiary Little, Brown and Company published his bestselling account of the investigation into disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, "Catch and Kill."

Ronan has long defended his sister Dylan, who renewed her accusations against Allen in the wake of the #MeToo movement in early 2018.

Grand Central Publishing did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Dylan said she was "unbelievably overwhelmed and so incredibly grateful for the solidarity demonstrated by @HachetteUS and @littlebrown employees today."

"From the bottom of my heart, thank you," she tweeted.

On Monday Dylan said Hachette's decision to publish Allen's autobiography was "deeply upsetting to me personally and an utter betrayal of my brother whose brave reporting, capitalized on by Hachette, gave voice to numerous survivors of sexual assault by powerful men."

Grand Central Publishing said Monday Allen's memoir "Apropos of Nothing" would be released in the United States on April 7, describing it as "a comprehensive account of his life, both personal and professional."

Hachette chief executive Michael Pietsch on Tuesday defended the decision to publish the director's autobiography.

"Grand Central Publishing believes strongly that there's a large audience that wants to hear the story of Woody Allen's life as told by Woody Allen himself," he told The New York Times.

"That's what they've chosen to publish."

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