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At one point, Previn says, Farrow held her upside down so the blood rushing to her head “would make me smarter or something.” Previn also describes the beginning of her and Allen’s relationship, saying that neither of them thought it would last long, but that it did largely because of the way they grew close during the aftermath of Farrow and Allen’s breakup.
That aftermath involves a battle between Farrow and Allen for custody of Dylan Farrow, as well as her brothers Moses and Satchel.
Now, after several decades of silence, Previn, who is currently 47, has given multiple interviews to journalist Daphne Merkin in which she speaks about her relationships with her mother, with Allen, with her siblings, and with the public eye.
Previn talks to Merkin about the beginning of her relationship with Allen; after watching Ingmar Bergman’s with Allen on break from college, “we chatted about it, and I must have been impressive because he kissed me and I think that started it.” She says she “felt valued” by Allen, which was “quite flattering for me” — “He’s usually a meek person, and he took a big leap.” Previn frequently casts her mother’s actions as self-serving attempts to get Previn on her side rather than Allen’s.
“I’m more introverted and nondescript.” Merkin ultimately concludes: Later, as I walk home, I find myself wondering whether Soon-Yi’s voice — having finally been heard — will be listened to, much less change anyone’s opinion.
It’s a gamble she’s taken by speaking out, but then again, she’s never been one to play it safe.
In August 1992, Previn excoriated her mother in a statement issued by Allen’s publicist that was published in Newsweek.
In the statement, she accused her mother of being “violent with me” and declared that “the business of him molesting Dylan is so ridiculous that I won’t dignify it with a comment.” Dylan Farrow, for her part, has maintained her story into adulthood, most recently reentering the public eye with the advent of the #Me Too movement.