How Kevin Spacey revealed his confidence during sex assault trial
Kevin Spacey is determined to revive his career after being cleared of sex assault allegations that he was sure ‘would fall apart under scrutiny’
Playing to the cameras, Kevin Spacey’s daily arrival at court was marked with a smile and a wave to the few still-loyal fans who gathered to catch a glimpse of him.
But only the sharp-eyed would have noticed a silver ring on the middle finger of the 63-year-old’s left hand. Fewer still would have appreciated its significance. Engraved on the band in Hebrew are words that read: ‘This too shall pass.’
The ring was a gift from Evan Lowenstein, a man who, for the past few years, has played an intriguing role in Spacey’s life.
The handsome American, who once starred in a boy band with his identical twin, is now not only the actor’s manager but best friend and constant companion, attending the trial throughout.
Indeed, the pair are so close that Spacey refers to the 49-year-old – who is on his second marriage to a younger, blonde, female British medic – as his ‘brother’.
Kevin Spacey (centre) was today cleared of all sex offence charges after a trial at Southwark Crown Court in London. To his right is Evan Lowenstein, his manager and best friend
Kevin Spacey’s daily arrival at court was marked with a smile and a wave to the few still-loyal fans who gathered to catch a glimpse of him
A court sketch showing Spacey dabbing his eyes after the not guilty verdicts came through
Spacey arrived at court on Monday wearing a silver ring on the middle finger of his left hand (pictured). Engraved on the band in Hebrew are words that read: ‘This too shall pass’
The ring was a gift from Evan Lowenstein (left), a man who for the past few years has played an intriguing role in Spacey’s life
Mr Lowenstein gave the ring to Spacey after the pair spent three months touring the world in 2019. And the message it bears appears to encapsulate Spacey’s approach to the tidal wave of accusations that first engulfed him and his career six years ago.
Throughout that time, he has largely kept his silence. But in June he gave an interview to a German publication in which he spoke of how he believed the trial in London would go.
‘The moment scrutiny is applied, these things fall apart,’ he told Zeit Magazine.
Referring to an earlier civil case for sexual assault brought against him in the States by actor Anthony Rapp in which a jury found in Spacey’s favour, he added: ‘That’s what happened in the Rapp trial, and that’s what will happen in this case.’
READ MORE – Kevin Spacey CLEARED in sex assault trial
Given his acquittal yesterday it appears that confidence was well-founded.
And, incredibly, despite the outpouring of accusations against him both here and in the States, Spacey believes his career can now be resurrected.
‘It’s a time in which a lot of people are very afraid that if they support me, they will be cancelled,’ he told the interviewer. ‘But I know that there are people right now who are ready to hire me the moment I am cleared of these charges in London. The second that happens, they’re ready to move forward.’
Indeed, as one Hollywood insider told The Daily Mail last night, when it comes to the movie-making business, memories can be short.
‘Spacey’s already dipped his toe back into the film business and I think there’ll be a big shrug in Hollywood because he’s an extraordinary actor, and he’s going to claim that everything that happened was consensual,’ he said. ‘With streaming, there’s always going to be a director who wants an actor of Spacey’s calibre, so someone will take him back and that will keep happening and be his way back in.’
Of course, it’s unlikely Spacey will ever regain anything like the sparkle he had when he left the Old Vic after a decade as its artistic director in 2015.
At a gala concert held in his honour that year there were live performances from Annie Lennox and Sting and tributes from Downton Abbey’s Hugh Bonneville and the Oscar-winning director Sam Mendes. Former US president Bill Clinton, an old friend, even chipped in with a video message.
Mr Lowenstein gave the ring to Spacey after the pair spent three months touring the world in 2019
Actor Kevin Spacey outside Southwark Crown Court, London, after he was found not guilty of sexually assaulting four men following a trial
Spacey with Mr Lowenstein (left) during a 2021 trip to Turkey
The pair watch on from the stands during the Men’s Final at the US Open in 2016
Spacey had been initially invited to join The Old Vic as a trustee in 1998 by Sally Greene, a wealthy socialite and entrepreneur who was determined to prevent its closure, amid rumours it would be turned into a lap-dancing club.
A charitable trust was formed and the theatre purchased for £3.5million.
But Spacey was not just co-opted into the running of the theatre.
This was the era of Cool Britannia and New Labour – and Spacey was a genuine Hollywood superstar. To say he was loved by the luvvies is something of an understatement.
In 1999 the film American Beauty was released to critical acclaim, earning him his second Oscar – the first was for his role in The Usual Suspects.
When his filming commitments allowed, the actor threw himself into London life, earning the nickname ‘Hyper Spacey’ for his non-stop socialising with the likes of Trudie Styler, Judi Dench, Sam Mendes and Helena Bonham Carter.
His social network also included high profile politicians such as Peter Mandelson and senior Royals. There was even an association with Jeffrey Epstein and the late financier’s now-jailed sidekick, Ghislaine Maxwell.
READ MORE: Kevin Spacey jury retires to consider verdicts at Hollywood star’s sex assault trial as actor stands accused of attacking four men
In 2020 an extraordinary photograph emerged showing Spacey sat beside Maxwell on the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh’s thrones in Buckingham Palace, the pair waving their hands in regal fashion.
It was taken in 2002 when they were invited into the throne room on a private tour of the Palace organised by Prince Andrew, a close friend of Maxwell’s.
At the time, of course, such connections served to bolster Spacey’s reputation as a mover-and-shaker. It meant his appointment as the Old Vic’s artistic director was seen as a huge coup.
Even so, his start would be bumpy. The first play he put on in 2004 had a mixed reception from the critics.
Trickier still was a bizarre incident in a south London Park which saw Spacey arrive, bleeding, at a police station one Saturday morning to claim that he had been violently mugged at 4am.
Later that same day he contacted police a second time, withdrawing his complaint and changing his story.
The actor claimed he had not in fact been attacked, but that a youth had conned him into handing over his mobile while he was walking his dog.
Spacey said that he had then given chase, tripping over his pet, falling on the street and hitting himself in the head.
Asked why he was out so late, he replied: ‘You know walking your dog in the park is a perfectly normal thing to do … My doggy had to go!’
As explanations go it raised more questions than answers.
There were already long-running rumours about Spacey’s sexuality, which he had pointedly refused to address.
‘It’s not that I want to create some mystique, it’s just that the less you know about me, the easier it is to convince you I’m that character on the screen,’ was the line he stuck to in interviews.
Certainly, his decade at the Old Vic was viewed as a success – on the stage, directing and commercially. When he left in 2015 he was given a special Olivier award for his contribution to British theatre.
Spacey was sacked from House Of Cards and then suffered the humiliation of being edited out of the Sir Ridley Scott film All The Money In The World
Mr Lowenstein is now Spacey’s manager as well as his best friend and constant companion
Royal recognition also followed with the award of two honorary gongs – a CBE and a knighthood.
Away from the theatre, Spacey’s career was going from strength to strength, his profile raised further still thanks to a starring role in the hit Netflix series House of Cards.
An apt title. Because in the autumn of 2017, Spacey’s house of cards well and truly collapsed.
That October film producer Harvey Weinstein was accused of being a sexual predator. Days later Spacey also found himself caught up in the #metoo movement when Rapp accused him of sexually assaulting him. The incident was said to have happened in the US when Rapp was 14 and Spacey was 26.
Spacey claimed not to remember the incident but said that if he had acted in the way Rapp alleged, ‘I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behaviour.’ He also admitted for the first time that he was gay, prompting accusations that he had cynically used the Rapp scandal to ‘come out’.
Within days, a stream of men had come forward to say they, too, had been harassed by Spacey – propositioned, groped and, in some cases, ‘paid off’ with gifts from the star.
Australian actor Guy Pearce described Spacey as ‘handsy’. Harry Dreyfuss, the son of actor Richard, said Spacey had groped him, which he denied.
Many of the claims were centred in or around the Old Vic. Faced with a torrent of allegations, the theatre’s management launched an immediate investigation, setting up an anonymous hotline and engaging a law firm to look at the claims.
The pair are so close that Spacey refers to Mr Lowenstein, who is now on his second marriage to a younger, blonde British medic, as his ‘brother’
It reported back in just two weeks, saying 20 men had come forward with ‘disturbing’ complaints of inappropriate behaviour against Spacey. These involved 16 staff and four others, all younger than the actor.
Spacey was approached about the claims but did not take part in the inquiry.
The theatre apologised and accepted there had been a ‘cult of personality’ surrounding Stacey which ‘may have prevented people, and in particular junior staff or young actors, from feeling that they could speak up or raise a hand for help’.
By then the damage to Spacey’s reputation and career had already been done.
The double Oscar winner was sacked from House Of Cards and then suffered the humiliation of being edited out of the Sir Ridley Scott film All The Money In The World.
Although his part remained in Billionaire Boys Club, his performance was barely seen.
On top of that was the financial hit suffered by Spacey himself, previously one of Hollywood’s best-paid stars.
His defence costs for the UK trial alone are put at more than £1m, a figure dwarfed by US legal fees. He told his latest trial: ‘I have not paid it all off and I still owe money.’
More significantly, two years ago he was required to make a £25.5 million payout to the producers of House Of Cards after an arbitrator ruled his sexual misconduct scandals amounted to a breach of contract. Last year he lost an appeal to overturn the ruling.
Whether or not Spacey has handed over the cash is unclear.
Spacey departs Southwark Crown Court today after being found not guilty
Spacey and Lowenstein applaud from the audience during the 2016 Emmy Awards
Shortly before the scandal broke, he sold his Los Angeles mansion for £8.5m.
He continues to own a £2.5m penthouse flat in an exclusive London tower block overlooking the Houses of Parliament, where he stayed during the court case. Spacey replaced its front door with a stage door from the Old Vic, having first received special permission from the building’s freeholders.
But home for Spacey now is in Baltimore, a city in Maryland that for all its charm is a sharp step down in the glamour stakes from Hollywood.
The £4.75million, six-bed waterfront mansion in which he has been living was purchased in early 2017 through a limited company. Documents filed by Spacey as part of one of his legal cases indicate that he is its actual owner.
He has been seen walking his dog Boston nearby and has even taken to the stage at a local jazz bar to sing a couple of Frank Sinatra songs – Send in the Clowns and Angel Eyes.
Before the controversy broke Spacey had an assistant, an agent, a publicist, a manager, a personal trainer and a bodyguard.
In the wake of the scandal, his publicist, Staci Wolfe, quit working for him, as did his agents at CAA. Only Mr Lowenstein, appointed as his manager in 2016, remains.
Mr Lowenstein briefly found fame in his own right having formed a pop band with his identical twin when he was 20. The duo enjoyed a Top 20 hit with a song called Crazy for this Girl in 2000.
He later married and had four children, divorcing from his wife Kassini in 2015. Unimpressed by his subsequent closeness to Spacey she filed a petition in 2019 requesting a court ruling that the actor should not be allowed to ‘interact’ with the couple’s children.
Kevin Spacey outside Southwark Crown Court, London, after he was found not guilty
Spacey speaks with the media outside Southwark Crown Court
The tennis loving pair watching the ATP Tour Finals at the 02 Arena in London
Mr Lowenstein’s close relationship with the American Beauty star was first noted when he was forced to deny being Spacey’s date when the pair arrived together at the 2016 Emmys.
Since the crisis unfolded the following year, Mr Lowenstein has barely left his side.
In July 2019 the pair embarked on a three-month trip taking in Vienna, Prague, Lisbon and Marrakech.
The holiday ended in Tel Aviv where the ring was given as a gift. Also on hand for that leg of the journey was Mr Lowenstein’s second wife, Lucinda. Born in Brighton, according to her social media profile the 32-year-old attended private Charterhouse School before training as a medic in London. The pair married in Florida in April 2021.
It is unclear how she met Mr Lowenstein. But, like her husband, she accompanied Spacey to court in London on a number of days and both were on hand to see his acquittal.
It represents the latest in a line of court ‘victories’ for Spacey.
In July 2019 a criminal case in the US alleging that Spacey had groped an 18-year-old boy at a bar in Massachusetts three years earlier collapsed.
Then, in October 2022, a civil sexual assault case in Manhattan brought by his original accusor, Rapp, was thrown out by US jury. Rapp, an actor who appears in the TV series Star Trek: Discovery, had been seeking £35million in damages.
With that, the focus of Spacey’s legal fight switched to the British courts.
While his acquittal yesterday concludes the criminal proceedings against him, two of the men involved in the case are known to also be suing Spacey in the civil courts.
No doubt the actor will approach any future legal battles with the confidence he approached this one, holding on to the belief that the controversy that has engulfed him will ‘pass’.
‘In ten years, it won’t mean anything,’ he said in that same interview. ‘My work will live longer than I will, and that’s what will be remembered.’
Only time will tell whether or not that proves to be the case.
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