In the early 1990s, Woody Allen took the world by storm when he revealed to the public via a press conference that he had fallen in love with his adopted stepdaughter. Shortly afterwards, they got married. Today, Woody and his former stepdaughter are still together. Join Facts Verse as Woody Allen’s stepdaughter breaks her silence on their marriage.
The Scandalous Tale of Woody and Soon-Yi
There are few stories in recent Hollywood quite as controversial or interesting as the tale of Woody Allen and Soon-Yi Previn. In the 1980s, Woody Allen began dating actress Mia Farrow. Mia Farrow had adopted Soon-Yi around five years previously, during her marriage to a composer by the name of Andre Previn. At the time that Soon-Yi first met Woody, she was only 10 years old. However, two decades later, the two would be married.
Over the years, the public has grown to view Soon-Yi Previn in many different ways. At first, the public viewed Soon-Yi as an innocent victim that Woody Allen had groomed from a young age to be his bride. As time went on, the public grew to view someone who had grown from being a victim to a coconspirator. Until recently, Soon-Yi chose not to make her feelings on the matter of her and Woody’s relationship public. However, Soon-Yi has recently revealed the truth about how she ended up marrying her adopted stepdad.
Mia Farrow and Andre Previn adopted Soon-Yi in 1975, when she was only five years old. Soon-Yi doesn’t remember much about her biological mother, other than that her family was very poor. The dire conditions that she lived in as a child caused her to run away at a very young age, which is how she ended up at the orphanage. She spent some time at one orphanage and was transferred to a second facility before being adopted by Mia and Andre.
Soon-Yi Preferred the Orphanage to Mia’s House
Soon-Yi was born in Seoul, and it was in Seoul that she was adopted. The young girl stood out to her adopted parents because she was the peppiest kid at the orphanage. Mia Farrow wooed Soon-Yi with gifts over a short period of time before eventually taking her home. From the beginning, Soon-Yi didn’t feel that her adopted mother’s affection was sincere. Once they were living together, it become more and more apparent that Mia’s maternal love was a façade.
According to Soon-Yi Previn, the headmistresses at the orphanages that she lived in before being adopted by Mia Farrow and Andre Previn oftentimes whipped her. However, the trauma of living in those orphanages would soon be blacked out by the trauma of living with Mia Farrow. Soon-Yi wasn’t the first child that Mia Farrow adopted. She had adopted two Vietnamese children previously. The actress actually had to fight international law while adopting Soon-Yi, because the law stated that families could only have two international adoptions each. Mia ended up getting her way.
As soon as Soon-Yi got home with Mia Farrow, it became apparent that the actress wasn’t the loving mother that she proclaimed to be. Mia soon became frustrated with Soon-Yi, and Soon-Yi proved hard to groom. Soon-Yi has recalled a traumatic incident wherein Mia tried to give her a bath. Soon-Yi was only accustomed to baths at the orphanages, where she would bathe in a big tub with the other kids. Because of this, she was afraid to bathe alone. Mia had no sympathy for her new adopted daughter, and simply threw her in the tub.
Mia Played Favorites with Her Many Kids
It seems that Mia Farrow had some unrealistically high expectations for Soon-Yi, and she became angry whenever these expectations weren’t met. The first place that Soon-Yi lived with her adopted mother was at a house in England. Besides Mia, there was also Andre Previn and the couple’s other children. According to Soon-Yi, Mia played favorites with the children. Soon-Yi, of course, was her least favorite. Besides the matter of favoritism and ridiculously high expectations, another thing that made this English household not fun to live at for Soon-Yi was the fact that Mia and Andre always seemed to be in the middle of a giant fight.
Mia Farrow and Andre Previn divorced in 1979, after which time Mia moved herself and the children to America. They lived for a time on Martha’s Vineyard. Here, Soon-Yi has recalled another traumatic incident wherein her siblings were preventing her from playing with them in the pool. Soon-Yi didn’t listen to her siblings and chose to play with them anyways. When one of the other kids got injured, Mia blamed Soon-Yi for the whole thing and got angry.
According to Soon-Yi Previn, Mia Farrow got so mad at her as a result of the swimming pool incident that she flippantly suggest she should send the young girl to an asylum. Soon-Yi wasn’t sure if her mother was being hyperbolic or not, and the idea of going to an asylum scared her. The family moved from Martha’s Vineyard to New York City when Mia was cast in a play. Around the time, Soon-Yi was placed into a school. Notably, her mother had her enrolled with kids that were much younger than her because she believed Soon-Yi wasn’t smart. Though Soon-Yi has a mild form of dyslexia, she has always been a very intelligent person.
Mia Was Abusive Towards Soon-Yi
For the most part, Soon-Yi’s negative memories of life with her adopted mother involve Mia being too critical or having expectations that were too high. However, there also seem to have been times where Mia became flat-out abusive towards Soon-Yi for apparently no reason. Soon-Yi has recalled that Mia would sometimes slap her, call her names, throw stuff at her, and even spank her with a hairbrush. On one occasion Mia allegedly threw a porcelain rabbit at her adopted daughter. Soon-Yi remembers feeling lucky that none of the shards from the porcelain rabbit injured her.
It was in 1980 that Mia Farrow began dating Woody Allen. Soon-Yi’s first impression of Woody was a negative one, as she had no interest in meeting a man that enjoyed the company of her adopted mother. Soon-Yi has recalled an early instance wherein she overheard Woody telling Mia that he though Soon-Yi was too introverted and needed professional help. This apparently made Soon-Yi incredibly angry, and she would oftentimes imagine committing violent acts against her mother and her mother’s new boyfriend.
Though Mia Farrow and Woody Allen became seriously romantically entangled and even adopted two kids of their own together, they never lived together. They chose to keep separate apartments across the street from one another. When Mia was staying over at Woody’s, she would leave Soon-Yi alone at the apartment to watch the younger children. At the time, she was only 12 years old.
How Soon-Yi Got Involved with Woody Allen
By the time Soon-Yi was coming of age, she and her mother barely spoke. Soon-Yi has recalled that Mia never taught her any of the things that a mother was supposed to when she was going through puberty. Instead, Soon-Yi had to figure out all on her own how to put a tampon in and what kind of brassiere to purchase. Combined with the fact that Soon-Yi was still being relied on constantly to babysit her younger siblings, these circumstances made her grown into a fairly independent young woman. According to Soon-Yi, the first time that she ever had a positive interaction of any sort with Woody Allen was when she was in the 11th grade.
The first positive interaction that Soon-Yi had with Woody Allen occurred after she broke her ankle during a school soccer game. Soon-Yi never called her mom for help, so she simply limped home. When she got home, it was Woody who took notice of her broken ankle. Woody made her go to the hospital, and offered to drive her to school the next day.
According to Soon-Yi, she was won over by how caring towards her Woody seemed to be even though the two of them had never clicked. Soon afterwards, Woody and Soon-Yi were attending basketball games together. Soon-Yi graduated from college in 1991, and it was around this time that the two became romantically involved. At first, the two believed that their romance was just going to be a fling. However, everything changed when Mia Farrow found out about the relationship. Mia found out that Woody was cheating on her with her adopted daughter when she stumbled upon some nude photographs of Soon-Yi.
Mia Farrow’s Revenge
Mia Farrow and Andre Previn were both livid at the fact that their adopted daughter was romantically involved with Woody. Andre cut Soon-Yi off financially, and Mia retaliated in other ways. After the revelation, Woody publicly announced via a press release that he and Soon-Yi were in love. The two had intended to keep their relationship a secret and eventually separate. However, the revelation of their relationship made it so that they stayed together.
On Valentine’s Day of 1992, Mia Farrow sent Woody Allen a cryptic message suggesting that she had plants for revenge. Soon afterwards, a video surfaced wherein one of Mia and Woody’s adopted children accused Woody of molesting her. The video came as quite a shock, but it was later decided by a team of experts that the child had been coerced into giving false testimony at the behest of her mother. To this day, people are still unsure whether or not Mia Farrow actually made the whole thing up. According to Soon-Yi, the continuing effects of Mia Farrow’s lies surrounding Woody’s molestation of his adopted daughter are one of the main things that caused her to break silence after so many years.
Woody Allen and Soon-Yi Previn ended up trying the knot in 1997, and the two are still together to this day! Though many have insinuated over the years that Soon-Yi was a naïve young woman that Woody Allen took advantage of and groomed, Soon-Yi believes that Woody was the naïve one and that her adopted mother took advantage of him.
Soon-Yi Previn has finally broken silence about her marriage to her stepfather. Now it’s time to hear from you: did you know that Woody Allen married his stepdaughter, and that she was only 10 when they met? Comment down below!