Kevin Spacey To Pay $44 Million To House Of Cards Producer For Alleged Sexual Misconduct Detail Explored

August 5, 2022 0 By Cypher9ja


Kevin Spacey to pay $44 million to House of Cards producer for alleged sexual misconduct
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A judge has ordered Kevin Spacey to pay House of Cards production company MRC nearly $US31 million ($44 million) for alleged sexual misconduct behind the scenes of the Netflix White House drama.

Spacey, who played Frank Underwood, was kicked off the series during its sixth season after facing allegations that he had sexually assaulted and preyed upon young men, including a House of Cards production assistant who said Spacey groped him, prompting MRC’s investigation.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Mel Red Recana confirmed an award previously handed down by an arbitrator in October 2020, which consisted of around $US29.5 million ($42 million) in damages and $1.5 million ($2.1 million) in costs and fees.

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Kevin Spacey attends a pre-trial hearing at district court in Nantucket, Massachusetts in 2019. (AP)

MRC had argued that Spacey owed them millions in lost profits because his misconduct forced them to remove him from the sixth season of the show, and it had to trim the season from 13 episodes to eight.

Ruling in the producer’s favour, the arbitrator found that Spacey’s behaviour constituted a material breach of his agreements as an actor and executive producing agreements.

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Earlier this year, Spacey’s attorneys attempted to throw out the $US31 million ($44 million) arbitration award, saying his behaviour amounted to nothing more than “sexual innuendos” and “innocent horseplay” and did not violate MRC’s anti-harassment policy.

Spacey was first accused of misconduct in 2017 in a Buzzfeed article, in which actor Anthony Rapp alleged that Spacey had made a sexual advance on him in 1986, when Rapp was 14. Production on House of Cards was suspended two days later.

Kevin Spacey and Anthony Rapp.
Actor Anthony Rapp accused Kevin Spacey of making a sexual advance on him in 1986. (Getty)

Two days after that, CNN published a story that accused Spacey of creating a “toxic” environment on set by making crude comments and engaging in non-consensual touching of young male staffers.

The arbitrator viewed videotaped deposition testimony and found that Spacey violated MRC’s sexual harassment policy with respect to five House of Cards crew members. According to Spacey’s lawyers – Stephen G. Larson and Jonathan E. Phillips – that conduct was not part of the CNN story, and only came to light after a subsequent internal investigation.

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They argue that MRC’s move to scrap two episodes of the show that had already gone into production and start over was forced by Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos’ decision on Nov. 2. Therefore, they contend, the damages MRC ultimately suffered could not have been caused by the alleged misconduct that surfaced later on.

The arbitrator noted that MRC “presented a straightforward damages claim based on concrete numbers” and that the “calculations of MRC’s damages were appropriately conservative and relied almost entirely on MRC’s actual costs and contracted-for revenues.”

Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright in House Of Cards. (AAP)
Kevin Spacey, seen here with co-star Robin Wright, was dropped from in House Of Cards in 2019. (AAP)

In May, Spacey was charged with four counts of sexual assault and one count of “causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent” by the U.K.’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), which had spent over a year reviewing a file passed to them by the Metropolitan Police. The alleged incidents took place in London and Gloucestershire between 2005 and 2013.

Despite these charges, Spacey is still set to appear in an upcoming film titled Peter Five Eight.

“While it’s unfortunate that increased negative press is timed with Kevin returning to work, it’s also to be expected,” the film’s producers said in a statement to Variety. “There are those who wish for him not to act, but they are outnumbered by fans worldwide who await an artist they have enjoyed for decades returning to the screen.”

“The production has no knowledge or comment on the various swirling allegations, and believe it’s a matter for the courts to determine validity if it exists. ‘Peter Five Eight’ is a film for fans who care more for the art than the scandal.”

MRC had no comment.

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