Women demand Woody Allen statue removed in Oviedo after sex assault allegations

The northern Spanish city of Oviedo could be about to lose one of its most popular landmarks following calls to remove a life-size statue of the Hollywood director over allegations by his adopted daughter Dylan Farrell.

Women demand Woody Allen statue removed in Oviedo after sex assault allegations
Woody Allen giving a lecture in Oviedo in 2005. Photo: AFP

Women’s groups are petitioning Oviedo City Hall to remove the statue, which has stood on the busy shopping street Calle Milicias Nacionales since 2003 when the director visited the city to collect the prestigious Prince of Asturias award.

The statue designed by Spanish painter and sculptor, Vicente Menéndez Santarúa, (known as Santarúa), is a popular tourist spot drawing visitors to pose for photos alongside the director who set part of the 2008 film, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, in the city.

But the Asturias Feminist Organisation now insists the tribute should be removed in the wake of allegations that he molested the daughter he adopted with ex-partner Mia Farrow.

A petition sent to the mayor’s office demands that the council remove the statue that serves “to honour an abuser and pervert”. Oviedo City Hall has confirmed it will consider the proposal during a forthcoming council meeting.

The removal of the tribute in the city described by Allen as “…delicious, exotic, beautiful, clean, lovely, tranquil and pedestrianized,” is just the latest backlash against the filmmaker.

The allegations that Allen had sexually abused the then seven-year-old first emerged in the 1990s during the custody battle between Farrow and Allen but were shrugged off after Allen denied the claims.

But in 2014, Dylan repeated the allegations in an open letter published in the New York Times calling for actors to stop working with him. Again, she was largely ignored.

Now aged 32, Dylan reiterated the allegations in the #MeToo movement and Time's Up campaign – which grew out of the Harvey Weinstein sexual abuse scandal, giving an emotional interview describing specific details of an alleged assault in the summer of 1992 in an attic in Connecticut.

Actors famous for roles in Allen’s films have now come out publicly to say they believe Dylan and would not work with Allen again, including Rebecca Hall, Colin Firth, Mira Sorvino, Natalie Portman and Reese Witherspoon.


Putellas becomes second Spanish footballer in history to win Ballon d’Or

Alexia Putellas of Barcelona and Spain won the women's Ballon d'Or prize on Monday, becoming only the second Spanish-born footballer in history to be considered the best in the world, and claiming a win for Spain after a 61-year wait.

FC Barcelona's Spanish midfielder Alexia Putellas poses after being awarded thewomen's Ballon d'Or award.
FC Barcelona's Spanish midfielder Alexia Putellas poses after being awarded thewomen's Ballon d'Or award. Photo: FRANCK FIFE / AFP

Putellas is the third winner of the prize, following in the footsteps of Ada Hegerberg, who won the inaugural women’s Ballon d’Or in 2018, and United States World Cup star Megan Rapinoe, winner in 2019.

Putellas captained Barcelona to victory in this year’s Champions League, scoring a penalty in the final as her side hammered Chelsea 4-0 in Gothenburg.

She also won a Spanish league and cup double with Barca, the club she joined as a teenager in 2012, and helped her country qualify for the upcoming Women’s Euro in England.

Her Barcelona and Spain teammate Jennifer Hermoso finished second in the voting, with Sam Kerr of Chelsea and Australia coming in third.

It completes an awards double for Putellas, who in August was named player of the year by European football’s governing body UEFA.

But it’s also a huge win for Spain as it’s the first time in 61 years that a Spanish footballer – male or female – is crowned the world’s best footballer of the year, and only the second time in history a Spaniard wins the Ballon d’Or. 

Former Spanish midfielder Luis Suárez (not the ex Liverpool and Barça player now at Atlético) was the only Spanish-born footballer to win the award in 1960 while at Inter Milan. Argentinian-born Alfredo Di Stefano, the Real Madrid star who took up Spanish citizenship, also won it in 1959.

Who is Alexia Putellas?

Alexia Putellas grew up dreaming of playing for Barcelona and after clinching the treble of league, cup and Champions League last season, her status as a women’s footballing icon was underlined as she claimed the Ballon d’Or on Monday.

Unlike the men’s side, Barca’s women swept the board last term with the 27-year-old, who wears “Alexia” on the back of her shirt, at the forefront, months before Lionel Messi’s emotional departure.

Attacker Putellas, who turns 28 in February, spent her childhood less than an hour’s car journey from the Camp Nou and she made her first trip to the ground from her hometown of Mollet del Valles, for the Barcelona derby on January 6, 2000.

Barcelona's Spanish midfielder Alexia Putellas (R) vies with VfL Wolfsburg's German defender Kathrin Hendrich
Putellas plays as a striker for Barça and Spain. GABRIEL BOUYS / POOL / AFP

Exactly 21 years later she became the first woman in the modern era to score in the stadium, against Espanyol. Her name was engraved in the club’s history from that day forward, but her story started much earlier.

She started playing the sport in school, against boys.

“My mum had enough of me coming home with bruises on my legs, so she signed me up at a club so that I stopped playing during break-time,” Putellas said last year.

So, with her parent’s insistence, she joined Sabadell before being signed by Barca’s academy.

“That’s where things got serious… But you couldn’t envisage, with all one’s power, to make a living from football,” she said.

After less than a year with “her” outfit, she moved across town to Espanyol and made her first-team debut in 2010 before losing to Barca in the final of the Copa de la Reina.

She then headed south for a season at Valencia-based club Levante before returning “home” in July 2012, signing for Barcelona just two months after her father’s death.

In her first term there she helped Barca win the league and cup double, winning the award for player of the match in the final of the latter competition.