Director and lifelong New York Knicks fan Woody Allen has reportedly been barred from the Vip lounge at the basketball team's Madison Square Garden home after refusing to take part in promotional advertisements for the venue's cable Tv channel.
The Midnight in Paris filmmaker has always been a regular at the Knicks' home games and had previously been granted access to Suite 200, where team owner James Dolan welcomes celebrities before tip off and at half-time to enjoy free drinks and food.
However, Dolan is said to have revoked the privilege for Allen after he rejected requests to discuss his work or introduce segments on the Msg network, where bosses recently acquired the rights to broadcast a number of his movies.
A source tells New York Post columnist Richard Johnson, "Woody said he would not be comfortable doing that (commercials). He has never done that for any show or network. They (Dolan's representatives) then said that this was a 'reciprocal arrangement' and that if Woody wouldn't go on Tv for them, he should not eat in their Vip restaurant anymore. Woody said fine and thanked them for the many years he had enjoyed the space there."
A spokesman for Madison Square Garden declined to comment on the story.