Kevin Spacey's 'House of Cards' comes crashing down

Netflix says it's suspending production on "House of Cards" following harassment allegations against Spacey. (David Giesbrecht/Netflix via AP)

Netflix says it's suspending production on "House of Cards" following harassment allegations against Spacey. (David Giesbrecht/Netflix via AP)

Last week, amid allegations of sexual harassment, Kevin Spacey came out as gay during a public apology to Anthony Rapp. Since then, Spacey has been dropped by his agent, publicist and effectively fired from Netflix.

Rapp, a Broadway veteran and “Star Trek” actor, made claims via Buzzfeed that Spacey made a sexual advance towards him when he was only 14 years old. Rapp came forward on Twitter and since that allegation was made public on Oct. 29, eight more men have come forward with similar claims. The allegations range from harassment to rape.

Spacey responded to the initial allegation with a statement on Twitter in which he said he owed Rapp “the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behavior.” Spacey then added, “This story has encouraged me to address other things about my life. I know that there are stories out there about me and that some have been fueled by the fact I have been so protective of my privacy. ... I choose now to live as a gay man. I want to deal with this honestly and openly and that starts with examining my own behavior.”

His first public announcement regarding his sexuality was not celebrated, however, as many interpreted it as a way to distract from the allegations. The comment was widely criticized, with some people saying he is adding to the problem of homosexuality being associated with pedophilia.

Many of the accusers remained anonymous but claimed Spacey was involved in sexual misconduct with them when they were minors in the 1980s.

“He knew that I was in high school,” Justin Dawes, who claims he and Spacey interacted in 1988 after meeting at a Connecticut theater, told Buzzfeed. “It was pretty clear.”

Another allegation came from a military advisor on the set of Spacey’s project, “Outbreak,” who claims one of Spacey’s assistants propositioned him on behalf of Spacey. “They asked flat out to engage in a sexual act,” Ebenhoch alleged. “It was enough to stun me. It blew me away.”

Ebenhoch told Buzzfeed that he rejected the invitation and avoided Spacey for the duration of the production.

Even Harry Dreyfuss, son of actor Richard Dreyfuss, has spoken out against Spacey with his own personal account. Spacey allegedly touched then 18-year-old Dreyfuss inappropriately in his London apartment.

“In retrospect, what disgusts me about Kevin was how safe he did feel,” Dreyfuss wrote for Buzzfeed. “He knew he could fondle me in a room with my father and that I wouldn’t say a word.”

Several other allegations came from co-employees of Spacey’s on the Netflix original series “House of Cards.”

“Mr. Spacey absolutely denies the allegations,” a representative for Spacey told New York Magazine.

Since the backlash that came from this ill-timed statement, Hollywood has been attempting to create distance from the now problematic actor. His talent agency, CAA, stopped representing Spacey as of Thursday Nov. 2. Publicist Staci Wolfe has also cut ties with Spacey.

Netflix has denied to comment on explicitly “firing” Spacey, but their announcement that “House of Cards” would be ending after the conclusion of its sixth season came only one day after the news of the allegations broke. Variety reported on Nov. 3 that Netflix was contemplating killing off Spacey’s character from the show, despite his lead role.

Netflix, along with “House of Cards” production studio, Media Rights Capital (MRC), later suspended production of the show completely.

“MRC and Netflix have decided to suspend production on ‘House of Cards’ season six until further notice to give us time to review the current situation and to address any concerns of our cast and crew,” the companies said in a joint press statement.

According to MRC, only one incident regarding Spacey was brought to them in 2012 and was handled appropriately and swiftly. The company stated that Spacey underwent training after the complaint was filed and, since then, they have established and maintained an anonymous complaint hotline, crisis counselors and sexual harassment legal advisors for their crew.

“Netflix was just made aware of one incident, five years ago, that we were informed was resolved swiftly,” Netflix said in a statement to CNN. Apparently they were “not aware of any other incidents involving Kevin Spacey on-set.” Netflix also commented that it was committed to “maintain[ing] a safe and respectful working environment.”

Also in light of recent events, The International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, which is responsible for the international version of The Emmy Awards, rescinded their plans to honor Spacey with the International Emmy Founders Award. Spacey has been removed from several online acting programs as well as much of the marketing campaign for his latest project, “All the Money in the World.”

Spacey’s representatives said in a brief statement released to the Hollywood Reporter on Nov. 1 that Spacey “is taking the time necessary to seek evaluation and treatment.” This has been one of the only comments made on behalf of Spacey since the allegations began.

Spacey is a two-time Oscar winner and a prominent member in the theater community. There is no way to predict how recent events will affect Spacey’s future but, at the moment, it’s not looking promising for the seemingly former “House of Cards” actor.


Julia Mancini is the associate life editor for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at Julia.mancini@uconn.edu.