Woody Allen may have just been hit by another reputation-damaging scandal thanks to the revelations of a supposed teen lover, Babi Christian Engelhardt.
The actress and model claims that she was involved in an eight-year relationship with the Oscar-winning director, beginning when she was just 16 and he was 41. Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, the now 59-year-old opened up about the alleged secret affair — which, apparently, included threesomes with Mia Farrow.
According to Engelhardt, she met Allen in October 1976 after giving him her phone number at a restaurant in the Upper East Side. The two soon after pursued a relationship that quickly got intimate — despite the model not yet being 17 (the legal age in New York).
She told the news outlet that about four years after she’d been sleeping with the director, he started bringing around his new “girlfriend” who turned out to be Farrow, who was 14 years her senior. In excerpts from a memoir manuscript, which Engelhardt shared with THR, she writes about her time spent with Allen, as well as the initial jealousy she felt toward the Rosemary’s Baby star.
“I felt sick. I didn’t want to be there at all, and yet I couldn’t find the courage to get up and leave. To leave would mean an end to all of this. Looking back now, that’s exactly what I needed, but back then, the idea of not having Woody in my life at all terrified me,” she said. “So I sat there, patiently, calmly trying to assess the situation, trying to understand why he wanted the two of us to meet.”
Engelhardt says that eventually, after a “handful” of threesomes, she grew to like Farrow, writing, “There were times the three of us were together, and it was actually great fun. We enjoyed each other when we were in the moment. She was beautiful and sweet, he was charming and alluring, and I was sexy and becoming more and more sophisticated in this game.”
She added, “It wasn’t until after it was done when I really had time to think of how twisted it was when we were together … and how I was a little more than a plaything.” Of Farrow’s involvement in their alleged threesomes, she says, “I always had the impression that she was doing this because he wanted it.”
Farrow and Allen continued to pursue their relationship until their nasty split in 1992, when allegations first surfaced about the director’s sexual misconduct with their adopted daughter Dylan Farrow, who later claimed in a New York Times open letter in 2014 that Allen had molested her as a child.
Farrow later learned of the sexual relationship Allen had with Soon Yi Previn, her adopted daughter and his now wife of 21 years. Speaking of this scandal, Engelhardt shared that she “felt sorry for Mia.”
“I thought, ‘Didn’t Woody have enough ‘extra,’ with or without her, that the last thing he had to do was to go for something that was totally hers?’” she said. “He had groomed Mia, trained her, to put up with all of this. Now he had no barriers. It was total disrespect.”