It seems the world of Hollywood has toppled over with sexual assault allegations, but no one’s career has taken a hit quite like Kevin Spacey’s. Well-known for his roles in “The Usual Suspects” and “Baby Driver,” Spacey has faced severe repercussions from the recent sexual assault allegations.
Anthony Rapp was the first man to come forward with a story of sexual assault. Only 14 at the time, Rapp allegedly sustained an assault which sparked a great debate over Spacey and the future of his career. Spacey’s response to these allegations have been greatly scrutinized by the public and the media.
“I honestly do not remember the encounter; it would have been over 30 years ago,” Spacey said in a written statement. “But if I did behave then as he describes, I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behavior, and I am sorry for the feelings he describes having carried with him all these years.”
Spacey continues, coming out as gay man and promising to examine his behavior.
This revelation has created a snowball effect, with more and more men stepping forward with stories of sexual assault at the hands of Spacey. Roberto Cavazos came forward with more sexual assault allegations; then, a reporter from CNN revealed that more than eight people from Spacey’s award-winning show “House of Cards” have also stepped forward with stories of harassment.
Much like Harvey Weinstein, Spacey is now facing the consequences of these allegations. While Spacey is talking about therapy, like Weinstein, there has been a domino effect on his career. “House of Cards” has completely cut ties with Spacey as of Nov. 6 and is quickly reworking the plot of the show without Spacey’s character.
The most shocking move came from director and producer Ridley Scott, another renowned name in Hollywood for movies like “Blade Runner,” “Alien” and “The Martian.” He recast Spacey’s character in his new movie, “All the Money in the World,” despite already being in post-production.
This action will cost the company and its employees about $10 million, and Spacey’s character will be played by Christopher Plummer. Ridley has explicitly stated that he plans on using no special effects to cover up the re-casting. He expects to meet the original release date. Many see this as the course of action all companies should be taking with actors and actresses accused of sexual assault. On the other hand, some people think the economic repercussions are too extreme.
At the University of New Orleans, students have varying opinions on this topic.
“I am on board with what the movie executives are choosing to do,” says Lauren Chauvin, a junior at UNO. “If I were them, I wouldn’t want to be associated with him, and I wouldn’t want to help him to continue to thrive when he doesn’t deserve it. Predatory behavior is unacceptable, and he along with all the others, should be removed from the spotlight.”
“I think it’s a good idea that they are replacing him because…they shouldn’t be rewarded for that behavior,” said Rachel Jung, a UNO senior. “[They] shouldn’t have his face on that.”
“Sexual abusers don’t deserve to take up that type of space or have that type of support,” said Alana Bradley, a junior at UNO. “The decision to recast Spacey sets an example of what should not and will not be tolerated in terms of abuse.”
The recasts are an act of solidarity with people who have accused Spacey of sexual assault, but only time will tell whether they affect the movie’s revenue and how Spacey’s career in film will fare.