The veteran New York filmmaker praised Scarlett Johansson, the ultimate leading lady of "Match Point," during its introduction at the Cannes International Film Festival.
"I originally cast an English girl in Scarlett's part because I thought everyone had to be British," Allen said of rules that govern film funding in England. "Then we found out that if a certain percentage of the cast were British, we could use an American.
"I've always been a big admirer of Scarlett," Allen said of the movie in which Johansson plays part of a love triangle that ends in tragedy.
The 20-year-old actress so impressed Allen he has signed her for a second film that begins shooting in London this summer, The Scotsman reported.