Kevin Spacey pleads not guilty to sexual assault charges in London’s Central Criminal Court. He is also to be replaced in “1242: Gateway to the West” movie.
Two time Academy Award winning actor Kevin Spacey steps down from the upcoming Genghis Khan movie following the many sexual assault charges against him. Spacey pleaded not guilty at Central Criminal Court in London also known as the Old Bailey.
At the hearing, on July 14th, 2022, the judge set a trial of four weeks. This trial will commence from June 6th, 2023.
After a long hiatus in light of the allegations, Spacey was not able to work or be cast in any major movies. This was until he was cast in the Genghis Khan historical drama “1242: Gateway to the West”. Now, Spacey has been dropped from the film and is being replaced.
Spacey is facing four counts of sexual assault and one count of ‘causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent’. Spacey was charged officially in June for assaulting three men spanning years 2008 to 2013 in the UK.
How did it all start?
The allegations against Kevin Spacey stem from long before. In 2017, Buzzfeed published the allegations made by the Star Trek star– Anthony Rapp. Rapp alleged that Spacey had sexually assaulted him when he was just 14 years old. Spacey responded to Rapp’s allegation in a tweet, brushing it off as “drunken behaviour” and using it as a segue to come out as a gay man.
More than 30 victims came forward with similar allegations against Kevin Spacey since then. The allegations range from sexual assault, harassment as well as attempted rape. Most of the victims remain anonymous. However, a vast majority of them have shared a work space with Kevin Spacey. Be it actors like Rapp or directors, journalists as well as multiple cast and crew members on the set of Netflix’s House of Cards. Spacey’s character was killed off the show soon after. The allegations of Spacey’s alleged criminal conduct can be traced back to the 1980s.
Sexual assault and celebrities.
Despite all the allegations and charges against Kevin Spacey, the man pleads not guilty. With the birth of the #Metoo movement, sexual assault survivors all over the world have been finding the courage to speak up against powerful men. Anthony Rapp, knowing very well the power Kevin Spacey had in the industry, spoke out against him. This lead to a hoard of victims to do the same.
But, the question as to why we treat celebrities differently in matters relating to crime has to be considered. Kevin Spacey is a veteran, well decorated actor who has had an extremely successful career in Hollywood. As a man with the amount of privilege as him, he has been allowed room to conduct himself the way he sees fit.
Spacey’s motives behind his need to live a private life have also been examined. An anonymous journalist also came forward as one of the victims. He said that him being a closeted gay man for the majority of his life has indeed effected his behaviour towards others. The journalist feared outing Spacey and didn’t speak up earlier. However, he said to Buzzfeed “Being closeted has for him enabled him to use this privacy claim as a shield against anybody looking closely at his actual behaviour,”
With the advent of the Johnny Depp v/s Amber Heard case, a lot of new questions have been arising. Most of which are harmful to the justice system and may protect the privilege of powerful men who are actually guilty of crimes. Spacey’s confidence to plead not guilty could be telling of this privilege handed to him by the entertainment industry.
Allegations of sexual assault against men in Hollywood are on the rise since Harvey Weinstein who is now a convicted sex offender. Yet the credibility and character of a victim is always cross-questioned. Does the celebrity have immunity?
Spacey’s trial is dated to commence in 2023 and only then will the many questions be considered.