Actress Scarlett Johansson has come out strongly in defence of director Woody Allen, saying she “loved” the film-maker and “believed” he is innocent of the abuse accusations made by his adopted daughter Dylan Farrow, The Guardian reported.

In an interview with the Hollywood Reporter, Johansson was asked how she felt about Allen, who has directed her in three films: Match Point, Scoop and Vicky Cristina Barcelona.

She said: “I love Woody. I believe him, and I would work with him any time.”

Johansson’s position is in clear opposition to actors such as Greta Gerwig, Timothee Chalamet and Colin Firth, all of whom expressed regret at working with Allen after the re-emergence of Farrow’s allegation of sexual abuse against him, the report said.

Allen has always denied the allegations, which have been investigated twice by authorities and no charges brought. A team of therapists also concluded the sexual abuse did not take place.

Other actors such as Javier Bardem and Anjelica Huston have proclaimed their support. Huston saying she would work with him again, “in a second,” Bardem voicing “doubts” about the allegations and labelling it a “public lynching.”

“If Woody Allen called me to work with him again I’d be there tomorrow morning,” Bardem said. “He’s a genius.”

Actor Javier Bardem and director Woody Allen. Wire photo.

Johansson added: “I see Woody whenever I can, and I have had a lot of conversations with him about it. I have been very direct with him, and he’s very direct with me. He maintains his innocence, and I believe him.”

Meanwhile, Allen reiterated his support for the #MeToo movement and his feeling that he was an early adopter of their objectives, The Guardian reported.

Speaking ahead of the French premiere of A Rainy Day in New York, Allen was asked if he regretted comments made in 2018, in which he said he “should be the poster boy for the #MeToo movement.” Comments which prompted Amazon to break a four-film exclusive deal with the famed director/actor.

“Not at all,” he told France 24’s Vincent Roux. “I’ve worked with hundreds of actresses, not one of them has ever complained about me; not a single complaint. I’ve employed women in the top capacity for years and we’ve always paid them the equal of men.

“I’ve done everything the MeToo movement would love to achieve.”

Allen just wrapped his latest film in Sebastian, Spain, Rifkin’s Festival, starring Christoph Waltz and Gina Gershon.