Soon-Yi Previn

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Soon-Yi Previn
Soon Yi Previn at the Tribeca Film Festival.jpg
Previn at the 2009 Tribeca Film Festival
Bornc. (1970-10-08) 8 October 1970 (age 48)
Seoul, South Korea
Known for
Woody Allen (m. 1997)
Children2 (adopted)
Soon-Yi Previn
순이 프레빈
Revised RomanizationSun-i Peu-re-bin
McCune–ReischauerSuni Pŭrepin
IPA[sʰun.i pʰɯ.ɾe̞.pin]

Soon-Yi Previn (/ˈprɛvɪn/; born c. 8 October 1970) is the adopted daughter of actress Mia Farrow and musician André Previn, and the wife of filmmaker Woody Allen. Previn is notable for her relationship with Allen, who was Mia Farrow's romantic partner before becoming involved with Previn. Previn's relationship with Allen became national news in 1992.

Early life and education[edit]

Soon-Yi Previn was born in South Korea. Previn's true age and date of birth are unknown, but are estimated based on a bone scan;[1] her passport indicates a date of birth of 8 October 1970.[2] Previn states that as a young child, she wandered the streets of Seoul starving and living out of trash cans.[3] She was eventually placed in an orphanage.[4][3] Prior to her adoption, U.S. federal law only allowed two visas per family for international adoption. Mia Farrow requested that her friends Rose and William Styron contact Massachusetts Congressman Michael Harrington to ask that he sponsor a bill to change this law. In 1977, the law was changed.[5] In 1978, following the change, Previn was adopted by Farrow and her then-husband, André Previn, and relocated to the United States;[6] at the time, she spoke no known language and reportedly battled learning disabilities.[1][6] Rose Styron is her godmother.[1]

In 1979, Mia Farrow ended her marriage to André Previn and began a long-term relationship with Woody Allen.[7] Allen later adopted two of Farrow's adopted children: Dylan Farrow (also known as Eliza) and Moses Farrow. Farrow also gave birth to Ronan Farrow in 1987.

Previn attended Marymount School of New York and Rider University. She graduated from Drew University[8][2] and earned a Master's Degree in Special Education from Columbia University.[1][9]

During her teens, Previn made an uncredited appearance in Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), which starred Mia Farrow and was directed by Woody Allen. Previn appeared as an extra in Paul Mazurski's 1991 film entitled Scenes from a Mall,[1] which starred Allen. Previn also appeared alongside Allen in the documentary Wild Man Blues (1997).[10]

In 1992, Previn stated that Mia Farrow had physically abused her.[11] Previn's brother, Moses Farrow, has stated that he, too, was physically abused by Mia Farrow.[12]

Relationship with Woody Allen[edit]

Woody Allen and Soon-Yi Previn in Venice

Previn has stated that Woody Allen "was never any kind of father figure [to her]," and added that she "never had any dealings with him" during her childhood.[11] According to Previn, her first friendly interaction with Allen took place when she was injured playing soccer during 11th grade and Allen offered to transport her to school. Following her injury, Previn began attending New York Knicks basketball games with Allen.[13]

In January 1992, Farrow found nude photographs of Previn in Allen's home. Allen, then 56, told Farrow that he had taken the photos the day before, approximately two weeks after he and Previn had first engaged in sexual intercourse.[14] Farrow contends that she broke off her relationship with Allen in 1992 following her discovery of the affair;[15][1] Previn and Allen dispute this assertion, claiming that Allen and Farrow were no longer dating at the time that Farrow discovered the nude photos of Previn.[11] Previn was a college student at the time her relationship with Allen began.[16][17] Allen described his relationship with Previn as a "fling" that developed into a more significant relationship.[18] Allen has called his role in their adult relationship 'paternal', while denying any parental or paternal role in Previn's life during her upbringing.[19][1][6][20] Allen issued a statement on 17 August 1992 saying that he was in love with Previn.[21]

Previn's relationship with Allen became public and "erupted into tabloid headlines and late-night monologues in August 1992."[22] As of 2006, Previn remained estranged from Farrow.[23]

Previn married Allen in Venice on 22 December 1997.[10][9] They have adopted two children together: Bechet Dumaine Allen and Manzie Tio Allen.[18][24] The family resides on Manhattan's Upper East Side.[25]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Orth, Maureen. "Mia's Story". Vanity Fair. Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  2. ^ a b Morrissey, Tracie Egan. "All Mia's Children: The Tangled Branches of the Farrow Family Tree".
  3. ^ a b Merkin, Daphne (September 2018). "Introducing Soon-Yi Previn". Retrieved 17 September 2018.
  4. ^ Robinson, Joanna. "Woody Allen's Sad, Bizarre Reflection on His Wife, Soon-Yi". HWD. Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  5. ^ Wypijewski, Joann (26 February 2014). "Woody and Mia: A Modern Family Timeline". The Nation.
  6. ^ a b c Callahan, Maureen (8 January 2012). "The quiet victory of Mia & the kids Woody left behind". New York Post. Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  7. ^ "Woody Allen, Wife Soon-Yi And Their Bizarre History: Ronan Farrow Addresses Sex Abuse Allegations At Cannes". International Business Times. 11 May 2016. Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  8. ^ "Drew University - Profile, Rankings and Data". US News.
  9. ^ a b "CNN - Woody Allen marries Soon-Yi in Venice - December 24, 1997". Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  10. ^ a b "Soon-Yi Previn". IMDb. Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  11. ^ a b c "Soon-Yi Speaks: 'Let's Not Get Hysterical'". Newsweek. 30 August 1992. Retrieved 15 September 2018.
  12. ^ "Moses Farrow Speaks Out". 4 January 2018.
  13. ^ "After Decades of Silence, Soon-Yi Previn Speaks". 17 September 2018.
  14. ^ Perez-Pena, Richard (23 March 1993). "Nude Photographs Are Focus Of Woody Allen's Testimony". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 17 January 2018.
  15. ^ Tait, Robert (5 May 2016). "Woody Allen 'immune' to criticism over affair with former partner's daughter". The Telegraph – via
  16. ^ Taylor, Derrick Bryson (30 July 2015). "Woody Allen's relationship with Soon-Yi is creepier than you could imagine". Page Six. Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  17. ^ Perez-Pena, Richard (23 March 1993). "Nude Photographs Are Focus Of Woody Allen's Testimony". The New York Times.
  18. ^ a b Fragoso, Sam (29 July 2015). "At 79, Woody Allen Says There's Still Time To Do His Best Work". NPR.
  19. ^ Silman, Anna. "A history of Woody Allen and Soon-Yi Previn describing their relationship, from "the heart wants what it wants" to "I was paternal"". Salon. Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  20. ^ Winter, Jessica (17 January 2014). "Did Woody Allen Molest His Adopted Daughter 22 Years Ago". Slate. ISSN 1091-2339. Retrieved 25 November 2016.
  21. ^ Weber, Bruce (18 August 1992). "Public Disclosures From the Private Life of Woody Allen". The New York Times.
  22. ^ "The Unruly Life of Woody Allen".
  23. ^ "Mia Farrow on Soon-Yi: "She's estranged– and strange."". People.
  24. ^ Weide, Robert B. (27 January 2014). "The Woody Allen Allegations: Not So Fast". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 3 April 2018.
  25. ^ Thurman, Judith. Tour Woody Allen's English Country-Style Manhattan Townhouse. Architectural Digest November 2008. Posted 21 September 2016. Accessed 6 October 2017.

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