Antonio Banderas says he won’t comment on Hollywood sex scandal

In the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, more and more prolific men in the film industry have been accused of sexual misconduct.

FILE: Rescued miners Mario Sepulveda and Luis Ursua, Spanish actor Antonio Banderas and Chilean President Sebastian Pinera pose at La Moneda presidential palace in Santiago on January 31. Picture: AFP.

LONDON - Antonio Banderas won’t comment on the sex scandal which has engulfed Hollywood because he believes that people should be considered to be innocent until proven guilty.

In the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, more and more prolific men in the film industry have been accused of sexual misconduct including Kevin Spacey, James Franco and Woody Allen - who has long been accused of abusing his adopted daughter Dylan Farrow when she was a child.

Banderas starred in Allen’s movie You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger but he never at any stage considered the allegations made against the filmmaker and he insists he will never speak out to judge somebody.

Speaking to The Daily Telegraph newspaper, the 57-year-old actor said: “These cases belong to a pattern of behaviour which has been carried out for millennia. But I wouldn’t like to be very specific about specific people. I think that’s unfair because I don’t have all the data ... People saying, ‘This person is guilty of this,’ is against my principles.”

Banderas, 57, says his principles come from being born and growing up in Spain when it was under the rule of conservative military dictator Francisco Franco in the 1960s and 70s.

He said: “I was born in a country in which you were guilty from the moment you were born just for being part of that country. When Franco died, I was doing theatre and I remember running in front of the police and fighting for our first democratic government to prove the fact that we were innocent until proven guilty. So, I don’t want to make that mistake, I don’t want to point a finger. I pay my taxes to have judges and policeman put the facts together and make a decision.”

Banderas - who split from his wife Melanie Griffith in June 2014, divorcing the actress in December 2015 - is set to star as Pablo Picasso in the second season of National Geographic’s Genius series and said the artist was a “huge figure” for him growing up.

He said: “I was born two blocks from where Picasso was born and when my mother was taking me to school, we always saw the plaque saying he was born in this house. We were living under a fascist dictatorship and didn’t have too many heroes, so he became a huge figure for me very early in my life.”