Kevin Spacey has apologised to actor Anthony Rapp who accused the Hollywood star of making a sexual advance towards him when he was 14 years old.
Admitting publicly for the first time that he is gay, Spacey said he could not remember the alleged 1986 incident with Anthony Rapp, but said he was “horrified” by the story.
“I honestly do not remember the encounter, it would have been over 30 years ago,” the 58-year-old said in a statement. “But if I did behave then as he describes, I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behaviour.”
Rapp, who is starring in Star Trek: Discovery, said the alleged incident happened when Spacey invited him to his apartment for a party.
The now 46-year-old said he had become bored and gone into a bedroom to watch television. Spacey appeared later after the party had apparently ended, the actor said in an interview with Buzzfeed News.
“My impression when he came in the room was that he was drunk,” Rapp was quoted as saying.
The Hollywood star, who was 26 at the time, allegedly picked Rapp up, placed him on his bed and climbed on top of him.
“He was trying to seduce me,” Rapp told the website. “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 said he pushed Spacey off and went to the bathroom before saying he was leaving.
“My stomach churns,” Rapp said. “I still to this day can’t wrap my head around so many aspects of it. It’s just deeply confusing to me.”
Spacey said he was “sorry for the feelings he (Rapp) describes having carried with him all these years”.
“This story has encouraged me to address other things about my life,” Spacey said.
“I know that there are stories out there about me and that some have been fuelled 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.”
The allegations against Spacey come amid a wave of sexual abuse accusations across Hollywood, triggered by the sex abuse claims levelled at movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.
Rapp said he had been encouraged to talk publicly about the incident with Spacey after seeing the stream of actors speak out about their experiences.
He said he didn’t want to “simply air a grievance”.
“But to try to shine another light on the decades of behaviour 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.”