Stars say Kevin Spacey should return to acting after 'seven years of exile'

15 May 2024, 20:50 | Updated: 15 May 2024, 23:58

Hollywood stars have begun campaigning for Kevin Spacey to resume his acting career "after seven years of exile".

Sharon Stone, Liam Neeson and Stephen Fry are among the names speaking up for the Oscar-winner following the release of a Channel 4 documentary levelling fresh allegations against 64-year-old Spacey, which he denies.

The Oscar-winning actor was one of Hollywood's biggest names when allegations of sexual misconduct were made in 2017, leading Netflix to cut all ties with him at the height of his House of Cards fame.

Despite being acquitted of numerous sexual offences after a trial in London, and winning a US civil lawsuit in which he was accused of making an unwanted sexual advance, Spacey said he still feels ostracised from the industry.

Basic Instinct star Stone told the Telegraph: "I can't wait to see Kevin back at work. He is a genius. He is so elegant and fun, generous to a fault, and knows more about our craft than most of us ever will."

The 66-year-old said it was clear aspiring actors had "wanted and want to be around him".

She added: "It's terrible that they are blaming him for not being able to come to terms with themselves for using him and negotiating with themselves because they didn't get their secret agendas."

Taken and Star Wars actor Neeson, 71, told the paper: "Kevin is a good man and a man of character. Personally speaking, our industry needs him and misses him greatly."

British actor and writer Fry said Spacey had been both "clumsy and inappropriate" on many occasions, but to "devote a whole documentary to accusations that simply do not add up to crimes... how can that be considered proportionate and justified?"

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The 66-year-old said Spacey's reputation had been "wrecked", adding: "Surely it is wrong to continue to batter a reputation on the strength of assertion and rhetoric rather than evidence and proof?

"Unless I'm missing something, I think he has paid the price."

A spokesperson for Channel 4 said: "Spacey Unmasked is an important film exploring the balance of power and inappropriate behaviour in a work environment, aiming to give a voice to those who have previously been unable to speak out."

Spacey won two Academy Awards as best supporting actor for The Usual Suspects in 1996 and best actor in 2000 for American Beauty, which also scored him a BAFTA for leading actor.

Last year, Spacey was found not guilty by a jury of nine sexual offences alleged by four men between 2001 and 2013 after a trial in London.

He also won a US civil lawsuit in October 2022, after being accused of an unwanted sexual advance at a party in 1986.

Spacey says he has struggled to get work despite his acquittals, branding his experience a "life sentence".