Kevin Spacey: sex pest unmasked
Kevin Spacey’s house of cards is tumbling down after his controversial apology for sexually assaulting a teen boy
FOR years he played one of TV’s most conniving characters – a manipulative, selfserving megalomaniac who even resorted to murder to get what he wanted. And he played it well. Those exasperated asides to the camera, that brutal bullying of unfortunate underlings in the Oval Office, the shocking schemes he concocted with his wife, Claire . . .
It was compelling stuff, watching Kevin Spacey playing fictional President Frank Underwood in House of Cards. When that precarious house came tumbling down Frank had to pull every dirty trick out of his already filthy book to salvage what was left of his political career.
Now Spacey’s life is crashing down like a proverbial house of cards – although it remains to be seen if he’ll be as resilient as Frank and manage to rise again.
Right now, it looks unlikely. Spacey (58) is about as popular in Hollywood as Harvey Weinstein, the serial sex pest who sparked a global movement of people speaking out about their experiences of harassment and abuse.
Actor Anthony Rapp started Spacey’s downfall, saying the older man tried to seduce him at a party when Rapp was just 14 and Spacey 26 and they were both appearing in a Broadway play.
“He picked me up like a groom picks up the bride over the threshold,” he told Buzzfeed. He then put him on a bed before “trying to get with [me] sexually”.
He felt Spacey “pressing into [me]” and “tightening his arms” before he was able to “squirm away”.
Since then there have been many more allegations.
Documentary filmmaker Tony Montana says Spacey groped him in a bar in Los Angeles in 2003. Mexican actor Robert Cavazos says he was just one of many young men Spacey made a pass at at the bar of London’s Old Vic theatre between 2004 and 2015 when Spacey was artistic director there.
“It seems the only requirement was to be a male under the age of 30,” Cavazos wrote on Facebook. “It was so common it even became a local joke.”
An anonymous man alleges Spacey tried to rape him when he was 14 and calls the actor a paedophile. Eight workers on House of Cards say he sexually harassed them for years and in one case assaulted a young man.
Harry Dreyfuss (27), son of veteran actor Richard Dreyfuss, says he was 18 when Spacey tried to seduce him. He says the incident happened when he went with his dad to Spacey’s London apartment in 2009 to rehearse lines for a play.
In the first formal probe, UK police have launched an investigation into the actor after a British man claimed he was sexually abused at the age of 23 in 2008 by the star after he invited him into his apartment for a drink.
IN ANOTHER case of his life imitating Weinstein’s, Spacey’s “people” are abandoning him left, right and centre. Both his agent and his publicist have dumped him and streaming service Netflix fired him from the sixth and final season of House of Cards.
As the Daily Beast news site points out, “It’s a fallout so epic you’d half expect Kevin Spacey in character as Frank Underwood to turn to the camera and purr about how he’d planned it all along.”
How things have changed. He once flew close to the sun, a golden boy in the showbiz land of milk and honey. Charismatic and versatile as an actor, he reaped the rewards: two Oscars, dozens of movie roles, critically acclaimed stage performances and millions in the bank.
There were always rumours of his sexuality and dodgy behaviour but, like Weinstein, they were pretty much brushed under the carpet of the privileged and the powerful.
Even the strange “mugging incident” in 2004 died down after a while. Spacey told police he’d been robbed of his cellphone at 4am while walking his dog in a South London park. Then he said he’d “fallen for a con” and had willingly handed over the device.
Probably cruising for sex, people said, and homophobic remarks followed.
Yet any sympathy Spacey might have had among members of the LGBTQI community evaporated in the wake of the Anthony Rapp revelation.
Spacey did apologise – but it was how he did it that upset people. First he said he was “beyond horrified” by the story but added he “honestly doesn’t remember the encounter”.
In a series of tweets he offers his “sincerest apology for what was clearly deeply inappropriate drunken behaviour” – and then he went too far.
“This story has encouraged me to address other things about my life. As those closest to me know, in my life I’ve had relationships with both women and men. And now I choose to live my life as a gay man. I want to deal with this openly and honestly and that starts with examining my own behaviour.” Outrage followed. “This isn’t a coming out story about Kevin Spacey, but a story of survivorship by Anthony Rapp and all those who bravely speak out against unwanted sexual advances,” said Sarah Kate Ellis, president of GLAAD, a prominent US gay rights organisation.
Rosie O’Donnell was among the first of Spacey’s peers to blast him. “F**k you Kevin,” she tweeted. “Like Harvey we all new about you – I hope more men come forward @KevinSpacey. No one knew details – like Harvey – but you knew both were creepy men with reps that said so.”
George Takei, a US social justice advocate, said, “Men who harass or assault don’t do it because they’re gay or straight. They do so because they have the power and they choose to abuse it.”
Star Trek actor Zachary Quinto agreed. Spacey didn’t come out “as a point of pride that could inspire children”, he said. “It was a calculated manipulation to deflect from the serious accusation that he attempted to molest one.”
AS THE fallout raged, Spacey’s estranged older brother, Randy Fowler, spoke to the Daily Mail about their troubled upbringing in San Fernando, California, saying his brother has his father’s “twisted genes”.
Fowler, a 62-year-old Rod Stewart impersonator and limo driver, claims he and Kevin were raised by a Nazi-loving father who trimmed his moustache like Adolf Hitler’s and abused his family so badly they nicknamed him The Creature.
He says his dad sexually assaulted his sons while their mom turned a blind eye.
“There was so much darkness in our home. It was absolutely miserable.”
Kevin turned to acting as a little kid and changed his name to “hide from his demons”, Randy adds.
“He struggled with his sexuality, always denying he was gay. On stage he pretended to be somebody else. It gave him power, transformed him.”
Dark childhood, secret torment – could it be the reason for Spacey’s double life? Maybe. Either way, the world will never look at him the same way again.
The speech Spacey made when accepting his best actor Oscar for American Beauty in 2000 has been played over and over since his downfall began.
“To my friends for pointing out my worst qualities, I know you do it because you love me,” he said. “That’s why I loved playing Lester – because we got to see all of his worst qualities and we still grew to love him.”
Maybe his friends should have tried a bit harder.
Spacey linked his apology for the incident to a statement that he’s gay. FAR LEFT: The Oscar winner has since been axed from the hit TV series House of Cards. RIGHT: Actor Anthony Rapp was the first to publicly accuse Spacey of assault. He says he was 14 when it happened.
FAR LEFT: Spacey’s late father, Thomas Geoffrey Fowler. MIDDLE LEFT: Kevin’s older brother, Randy Fowler is a Rod Stewart impersonator and limo driver. He calls their father a Naziloving rapist who sexually abused his sons and beat Kevin. LEFT: Kevin with his late mother, Kathleen.