Spike Lee on Saturday apologized for comments he made in a radio interview on Friday defending his “friend” Woody Allen and suggested that “cancel” culture may be going too far for filmmakers accused of serious wrongdoing.
“I Deeply Apologize. My Words Were WRONG,” the director tweeted. “I Do Not And Will Not Tolerate Sexual Harassment, Assault Or Violence. Such Treatment Causes Real Damage That Can’t Be Minimized.”
The director responded after a Friday interview with Len Berman and Michael Riedel, co-hosts of New York City radio station WOR’s “In the Morning” show. “I’d just like to say Woody Allen is a great, great filmmaker and this cancel thing is not just Woody,” Lee said. “When we look back on it we are going to see that — short of killing somebody — I don’t know you just erase someone like they never existed.”
Lee, who appeared on the show to promote his new Netflix movie “Da 5 Bloods,” added, “Woody is a friend of mine, a fellow Knick fan, and I know he’s going through it right now.”
I Deeply Apologize. My Words Were WRONG. I Do Not And Will Not Tolerate Sexual Harassment, Assault Or Violence. Such Treatment Causes Real Damage That Can't Be Minimized.-Truly, Spike Lee.
— Spike Lee (@SpikeLeeJoint) June 13, 2020
Allen has struggled to continue as a filmmaker in recent years since his daughter Dylan Farrow resurfaced accusations that he molested her in the early 1990s when she was 7. Amazon Studios dropped plans for the 2018 release of the Timothée Chalamet-Elle Fanning romance “A Rainy Day in New York” and returned U.S. rights to Allen last year.
Allen, who was never charged with a crime after two separate police investigations in the 1990s, has repeatedly called the accusations a “total fabrication.” In his memoir “Apropos of Nothing” published earlier this year, he also suggested the claims surfaced because of ex-partner Mia Farrow’s “Ahab-like quest” for revenge after she learned he had begun dating then 21-year-old Soon-Yi Previn, whom Farrow and previous husband André Previn had adopted in 1978.
Listen to the full interview below.