• 23:59
  • 20.08.2019
Years of sordid Spacey rumours
showbiz
20.08.2019

Years of sordid Spacey rumours

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Kevin Spacey’s House of Cards is falling fast as horrifying stories about the Oscar-winner tumble out of Hollywood along with suggestions there is even more to come.
After Star Trek actor Anthony Rapp claimed the movie star made sexual advances on him when he was 14 and Spacey was 26, it appears many industry insiders were aware of rumours about the star.
Two weeks ago, well-known Boston journalist Heather Unruh tweeted: “The #weinsteinscandal has emboldened me — #truth time. I was a Kevin Spacey fan until he assaulted a loved one. Time the dominoes fell.”
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It took several days for her accusation to be picked up by news outlets, many of which did not publish her name or Spacey’s “for legal reasons”, although The Sun quoted an insider as saying: “Rumours about this actor have circulated for years ... Lots of people are making allegations after what’s happened with [Harvey] Weinstein.”
Unruh was challenged on Twitter by some users, who said her accusations were “hearsay” and that it was unfair “to make an accusation without back-up.”
But the former news anchor replied: “This is 100% true … this person is considering all options about speaking out — not an easy decision.”
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She later added: “My intent was to encourage a badly needed investigation and conversation. Plenty of information to be uncovered. #Investigate #It’sNotOk.”
And it wasn’t just Unruh claiming the 58-year-old American Beauty actor was a sexual predator. In a protected tweet, a woman named Nadine West wrote: “KS groped my young male friend when they were both working at [London theatre] the Old Vic. Was apparently always known as one to avoid. Sadly unsurprised.”
Another commenter tweeted that she had heard similar stories from multiple sources, too.
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Top London theatre director Victoria Featherstone told BBC Radio 4’s Today that there had been “concerns” over Spacey for years. When asked whether she was aware of stories about Spacey when he was at the Old Vic, the Royal Court Theatre artistic director replied: “I think that many people in the theatre and in the creative industries have been aware of many stories of many people over a lot of years, and Kevin Spacey would be one of the people that people have had concerns about, yes.”
Spacey admitted there were “stories out there about me” in his much-maligned apology to Rapp, in which he chose to come out as gay. Fans criticised his timing, saying that revealing the truth about his sexuality while saying sorry looked like a way to deflect attention from the younger actor’s accusation.
It appears the Usual Suspects star’s apology may have been an attempt to head off an even larger chorus of accusations from people who knew this open secret, just as they knew about producer Harvey Weinstein.
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Rapp this week claimed in a Buzzfeed interview that in 1986, when he was a child actor in a Broadway show, Spacey invited him to a party at his Manhattan apartment.
As the only child there, Rapp said he spent most of the evening watching TV in a bedroom, until a drunk Spacey appeared in the room, picked him up “like a groom picks up the bride” and then lay down on top of him. “He was trying to seduce me,” said Rapp, now 46. “I was aware that he was trying to get with me sexually.”
Rapp said he had found it hard to watch Spacey’s rise to fame, and was increasingly incredulous that anyone would do something like that to a 14-year-old boy.
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Following the House of Cards actor’s apology for his “deeply inappropriate drunken behaviour”, it has emerged that many other stars already knew about the rumours surrounding him. Rosie O’Donnell responded angrily to his claim that he could not remember what had happened with Rapp, writing: “u don't remember the incident — 30 years ago? — f*** u kevin — like Harvey we all knew about u — I hope more men come forward.”
Rose McGowan added: “Bye bye, Spacey goodbye, it’s your turn to cry, that’s why we’ve gotta say goodbye.”
In 2005, Seth MacFarlane — who made a pointed joke about Weinstein’s behaviour at the 2013 Oscars — referenced Spacey’s alleged sexual misconduct in an episode of Family Guy. Baby Stewie is seen running naked through a crowd shouting, “Help! I’ve escaped from Kevin Spacey’s basement! Help me!”
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Netflix confirmed to news.com.au it will not renew House of Cards, which is currently filming its sixth season. It comes after the streaming service released a statement saying it was “deeply troubled” by the allegations against Spacey.
But it’s understood the decision to cancel the show was made months ago and was not in response to the claims.
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While it’s not uncommon for a TV show to end after six years, House of Cards is seen as tentpole show for Netflix, primarily because it was its first.
The statement released by the service read: “In response to last night’s revelations, executives from both of our companies arrived in Baltimore this afternoon to meet with our cast and crew to ensure that they continue to feel safe and supported. As previously scheduled, Kevin Spacey is not working on set at this time.”
Despite the damage to his reputation, the passage of 31 years since the alleged incident involving Rapp protects Spacey from criminal prosecution or a civil suit under New York state law.
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As we wait to see who will next comment on Spacey, the net is casting ever wider following Weinstein’s great fall, with victims standing up to powerful predators in Hollywood and across the world.
The New York Post speculated that the next “tipping point” would be the stars who still deny knowing anything, such as Matt Damon and George Clooney, who have pulled out of scheduled public appearances to promote their struggling movie Suburbicon.
“Whom else does the industry know about and protect?” the editorial continued. “It’s hard to recall a time when the cultural landscape has shifted so dramatically. More than ever, the general public is inclined to believe self-reporting victims. More than ever, we are inclined to demand that the accused speak, that guilt be met with real consequence.”
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