Actor Kevin Spacey came out as gay in a statement responding to an actor’s allegations that he sexually assaulted him as a child, grossly conflating homosexuality and pedophilia, The Daily Beast reports.
Buzzfeed News reported Sunday that “Star Trek: Discovery” actor Anthony Rapp accused Spacey of throwing him on a bed and trying to “seduce” him when Rapp was just 14 years old.
Spacey has avoided rumors that he’s gay on many occasions but used his statement in response to the allegations to officially come out of the closet.
Rapp told Buzzfeed that they were both performing on Broadway in 1986 when they met at a party. Rapp was 14 and Spacey was 26.
“My memory was that I thought, ‘Oh, everybody’s gone. Well, yeah, I should probably go home.’ [Spacey] sort of stood in the doorway, kind of swaying,” Rapp told Buzzfeed. “My impression when he came in the room was that he was drunk. He picked me up like a groom picks up the bride over the threshold. But I don’t, like, squirm away initially, because I’m like, ‘What’s going on?’ And then he lays down on top of me. He was trying to seduce me. I don’t know if I would have used that language. But I was aware that he was trying to get with me sexually.”
Rapp told Buzzfeed he was able to “squirm away” and talked his way out of the apartment.
Spacey tweeted a statement after the story was reported, claiming to not “remember” the encounter and deflected by coming out as gay after decades of dodging the rumors.
“I have a lot of respect and admiration for Anthony Rapp as an actor,” Spacey said in the statement. “I’m beyond horrified to hear his story. I honestly do not remember the encounter, it would have been over 30 years ago. 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.”
“This story has encouraged me to address other things about my life,” he continued. “I know that there are stories out there about me and that some have been fueled by the fact that I have been so protective of my privacy. As those closest to me know, in my life I have had relationships with both men and women. I have loved and had romantic encounters with men throughout my life, and 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.”
— Kevin Spacey (@KevinSpacey) October 30, 2017
Many headlines that would have otherwise said Kevin Spacey accused of assaulting actor as a child instead led with Spacey’s “coming out,” showing it was not just a nauseating move by his PR team but possibly a shrewd one.
The statement “implies that when most gay men get drunk, it’s second nature for them to prey on a 14-year-old boy,” Ira Madison III wrote at The Daily Beast, adding the coming out “will absolutely overshadow Rapp’s story, which is exactly what Spacey was counting on.”
“At least now we know why Spacey has fiercely guarded his ‘private life,’ as he calls it,” Madison wrote. “He was merely safeguarding his most powerful weapon until he could use it on Rapp and the gay community he now claims he has chosen to be a part of.”