Rapp Takes On Spacey

Just as we went to press, a story broke which we’ve already re-written – twice.  Anthony Rapp, original cast member of Rent and currently starring on Star Trek: Discovery, accused Kevin Spacey of making sexual advances on him when he was 14!  In 1986, Rapp was on Broadway in Precious Sons and Spacey was in Long Day’s Journey Into Night.  After a party at Spacey’s home, the two were alone.  Kevin laid Anthony on the bed and then, as Rapp says, “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.”  Anthony got himself out of the apartment, while Spacey stood in the doorway saying, “Are you sure you wanna go?”  Rapp says, “I still to this day can’t wrap my head around so many aspects of it.  It’s just deeply confusing to me.”

He didn’t tell anyone about this until he was in Six Degrees of Separation on Broadway between 1990-92.  I can corroborate the timeline because when I met Anthony in 1991, he told me about this incident.  He even tried to go public in a 2001 Q&A with The Advocate – although Spacey’s name was redacted from the story.  So why speak up now?  “Not simply to air a grievance, but to try to shine another light on the decades of behavior that have been allowed to continue because many people, including myself, being silent.  I’m feeling really awake to the moment that we’re living in, and I’m hopeful that this can make a difference.”  But can one voice make a difference? 

Within moments of Rapp going public, Spacey made his own statement.  He Tweeted, “I have a lot of respect and admiration for Anthony Rapp as an actor.  I am 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 as he describes, I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate behavior, and I am sorry for the feelings he describes having carried with him all these years.”  And then he added this: “This story had encouraged me to address other things in my life.  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.”  While nothing excuses Spacey’s behavior, it’s a start.  Just goes to show, the power of one voice.  Bravo, Anthony.

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