Kevin Spacey has been accused of recurrent sexual misconduct on the set of House of Cards. Yesterday, CNN published a report in which eight people—all of them either current or former employees on the show—came forward to corroborate a pattern of sexual harassment on Spacey's part.
One former employee alleged that Spacey sexually assaulted him during one of the show's early seasons. The former production assistant stated that he and Spacey were in a moving car when Spacey, without consent, put his hand down the assistant's pants. “I was in a state of shock,” the former assistant told CNN. “He was a man in a very powerful position on the show and I was someone very low on the totem pole and on the food chain there.”
All eight of the employees in the report, who spoke out anonymously for fear of retaliation, described Spacey's conduct as "predatory" and as creating a "toxic" work environment. His alleged behavior includes nonconsensual touching and crude comments, and targeted production staffers who were typically young and male.
Following the release of the CNN report, Spacey's talent agency CAA and publicist Staci Wolfe both parted ways with the actor, per Variety.
Production on the Netflix drama's final season was shut down earlier this week in the wake of an allegation against Spacey made by actor Anthony Rapp, who stated that Spacey made an advance towards him at 14. “MRC and Netflix have decided to suspend production on House of Cards Season Six, until further notice, to give us time to review the current situation and to address any concerns of our cast and crew,” the companies said in a statement.
Spacey responded to Rapp's allegation with a widely criticized Twitter statement in which he claimed not to remember the encounter but apologized, while also publicly coming out as gay for the first time.
Netflix told CNN that a representative was sent to the House of Cards set on Monday, following the initial allegation. "Netflix was just made aware of one incident, five years ago, that we were informed was resolved swiftly," the statement said. "On Tuesday, in collaboration with MRC, we suspended production, knowing that Kevin Spacey wasn't scheduled to work until Wednesday. Netflix is not aware of any other incidents involving Kevin Spacey on-set. We continue to collaborate with MRC and other production partners to maintain a safe and respectful working environment. We will continue to work with MRC during this hiatus time to evaluate our path forward as it relates to the production, and have nothing further to share at this time."
MRC, the production company behind the show, issued a separate statement in which it says it has implemented "an anonymous complaint hotline, crisis counselors, and sexual harassment legal advisors for the crew":
We are deeply troubled to learn about these new allegations that are being made to the press concerning Kevin Spacey's interaction with members of the crew of House of Cards ... As the producer of the show, creating and maintaining a safe working environment for our cast and crew has always been our top priority. We have consistently reinforced the importance of employees reporting any incident without fear of retaliation and we have investigated and taken appropriate actions following any complaints. For example, during our first year of production in 2012, someone on the crew shared a complaint about a specific remark and gesture made by Kevin Spacey. Immediate action was taken following our review of the situation and we are confident the issue was resolved promptly to the satisfaction of all involved. Mr. Spacey willingly participated in a training process and since that time MRC has not been made aware of any other complaints involving Mr. Spacey.