Kevin Spacey ‘should never have been cancelled’ says Hollywood executive after the House Of Cards star is found not guilty of sexual assault
- Hollywood actor Kevin Spacey was cleared of all charges after a trial in London
Kevin Spacey ‘should never have been cancelled’, a top Hollywood executive said after the star was cleared of sexually assaulting four men.
Double Oscar winner Spacey, who marked his 64th birthday yesterday, was overcome with emotion when the jury at London’s Southwark Crown Court returned not guilty verdicts on all counts.
Spacey was accused of abusing his fame and power to carry out nine sex attacks on four men during his tenure as artistic director of the Old Vic theatre. But he insisted the claims were ‘madness’ and accused the claimants of ‘lying for money’.
Since the dramatic high-profile trial – which included evidence in support of Spacey from Sir Elton John – concluded, The House of Cards star’s supporters have rallied around him.
One top executive said people ‘rushed to judgement’ because of the MeToo movement and Spacey deserved to get his career back.
Kevin Spacey (pictured outside court after the verdict yesterday) ‘should never have been cancelled’, a top Hollywood executive said after the star was cleared of sexually assaulting four men.
Spacey (pictured with his Oscar for American Beauty) was accused of abusing his fame and power to carry out nine sex attacks on four men during his tenure as artistic director of the Old Vic theatre. But he insisted the claims were ‘madness’ and accused the claimants of ‘lying for money’
‘This is a man that never deserved to be removed so swiftly without any due process,’ the executive told The Telegraph.
‘There are people who were more interested in rushing to judgement than learning the actual truth.
‘Kevin Spacey should now be able to resurrect his career. He should never have been cancelled.’
On the steps of the court after the verdicts were delivered, the US actor thanked the jury, his legal team as well as his loyal manager and longtime friend Evan Lowenstein for standing by him.
Since the dramatic high-profile trial – which included supportive evidence from Sir Elton John – concluded, Spacey’s supporters have rallied around The Usual Suspects star
Sir Elton John and Spacey attend the Grey Goose Character & Cocktails Winter Fundraiser Ball in aid of the Elton John AIDS Foundation in 2009
He said: ‘I imagine that many of you can understand that there’s a lot for me to process after what has just happened today. But I would like to say that I’m enormously grateful to the jury for having taken the time to examine all of the evidence and all of the facts, carefully, before they reached their decision.
‘I am humbled by the outcome today. I also want to thank the staff inside this courthouse, the security, my legal team and Evan Lowenstein for being here every day.’
The allegations not only shredded what had been a glittering showbiz career but also had major financial implications, with the star told to pay £25.5million to the producers of House of Cards after he was sacked.
He has also been landed with at least £1million in defence fees and suffered the humiliation of being edited out of the Sir Ridley Scott film All The Money In The World. Earlier in the trial Spacey told the jury: ‘I’ve lost everything.’
He was first awarded the Academy Award for best supporting actor in 1996 for his role as Roger ‘Verbal’ Kint in the mystery thriller The Usual Suspects (above)
Spacey poses with his Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in The Usual Suspects in 1996 (left). Right: Spacey posing with his Best Actor Oscar for American Beauty in 2000
Kevin Spacey was sacked from House Of Cards and then suffered the humiliation of being edited out of the Sir Ridley Scott film All The Money In The World
Two of the men involved in the case are known to also be suing Spacey in the civil courts. But the verdict ends criminal proceedings against him, raising the prospect that he could soon return to screens after being shunned by Hollywood for the last six years.
With two Oscars for his performances in American Beauty and The Usual Suspects under his belt, the Hollywood star was at the peak of his powers when bombshell allegations of sex offences were levelled against him six years ago.
His once-glittering career suddenly went into freefall, as he suffered the humiliation of being sacked from hit Netflix series House of Cards and being edited out of the Sir Ridley Scott film All The Money In The World, as well as vast financial losses.
Spacey is known for his role in 1995 hit The Usual Suspects (pictured), which won him an Oscar
American Beauty (pictured) came out four years later in 1999 and earned the star another Oscar, this time for Best Actor
More recently he appeared on screen alongside Jamie Foxx (left), Jon Hamm, Lily James and Ansel Elgort in 2017 film Baby Driver (pictured)
Yet he always remained confident that he could reverse his fortunes, once remarking in an interview: ‘In ten years, it won’t mean anything. My work will live longer than I will, and that’s what will be remembered.’
When the court asked Spacey about his financial situation, he answered: ‘I have got no money coming in and I have had a lot of legal bills… and I have not paid it all off and I still owe money.’
The actor sold his Los Angeles mansion for £8.5million shortly before the scandal broke.
He still owns a £2.5million penthouse flat in an exclusive London tower block overlooking the Houses of Parliament – where he stayed during the court case.
As for the Old Vic, a London theatre that Spacey headed for 11 years, it is unknown whether the star will be reinstated.
In 2017, when allegations against the actor emerged, the Old Vic said ‘no complaints’ or allegations were ever received about Spacey either during his tenure or since he left.
What claims has Kevin Spacey faced down?
Over the past six years, Kevin Spacey has been accused of attacking at least 30 men in Britain and America leading to a number of civil claims and criminal cases – but not one has been upheld.
American actor Anthony Rapp, 51, claimed Spacey assaulted him when he was 14, launching a £31 million civil claim for damages in the US.
The case was dismissed after a jury ruled that the actor was not liable for battery. In 2017, an anonymous artist separately claimed the star pursued a sexual relationship with him in 1983, when he was 14. But in 2021, the accuser was dropped from a civil suit in America after refusing to reveal his name in court proceedings.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department announced it was investigating allegations of a man who claimed Spacey sexually assaulted him in West Hollywood in 1992. But prosecutors decided not to file criminal charges in connection with the case, which they said fell outside the statute of limitations.
Spacey went on trial at London’s Southwark Crown Court accused of carrying out nine sex attacks on four men – but was found not guilty on all counts.
He was accused of groping a man multiple times causing him to nearly crash as he was driving on the way to Sir Elton John’s ball. But the actor was cleared of the sexual assault after jurors heard the star did not attend the ball on the night of the alleged attack.
Spacey was also accused of groping a man at a Cotswolds holiday home but was cleared of sexual assault after claiming it was just a clumsy pass.
The actor was accused of performing a sex act on a drama graduate in 2008 while he was sleeping but was found not guilty after saying it was consensual.
Spacey was also accused of grabbing a man ‘like a cobra’ at a gala. He was cleared of sexual assault after claiming the complainant had made it up.
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