When Kevin Spacey first faced sexual assault allegations in 2017 he was abruptly airbrushed out of All The Money In The World, Ridley Scott’s thriller about the Getty dynasty, and replaced by Christopher Plummer. When he was cleared yesterday in London of nine counts of sexual assault and misconduct he cried, collected himself and told reporters he was “humbled”. He had left his four accusers, who all have a right to lifelong anonymity, feeling “small, diminished and worthless,” according to the prosecution. But he had told the jury that most of the alleged assaults were in fact consensual and even playful. He was “a big flirt,” he said. Only one of the allegations – that he nearly caused a crash by grabbing a driver’s crotch on the way to a ball hosted by Elton John – did he deny outright. The jurors may not always have believed him, but they rejected the prosecution’s case.
Can he now rebuild his career? He seems to think so. “In ten years, it won’t mean anything,” he said of his six years in the wilderness in an interview last month with Die Zeit. “There are people right now who are ready to hire me the moment I’m cleared of these charges in London.” He may have been emboldened by a separate civil trial last year in New York in which an accuser sought $40 million in damages but Spacey was cleared of liability. Producers will be more cautious; acquittal is not necessarily un-cancelling.
Photograph Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images