Friday, May 24, 2024

A Kevin Spacey Mark Reacts to ‘Unmasked’ Documentary

I tried to watch "Spacey Unmasked" on Max but had a hard time keeping a straight face: A guy jerks off in front of you and your response is to keep hanging out with him if the situation sounds like a chance to move up the Hollywood ladder -- and now you claim you were traumatized?!!!!

A day later I heard from an old friend of mine who experienced Kevin Spacey’s aggressive antics firsthand(sy) when we both lived in Los Angeles in the early ‘90s. He had this to say after watching the documentary: 
"Spacey Unmasked" is good. But highly disappointing to learn that I was one of hundreds…crazy. It turns out that his modus operandi was forcing himself on people in semi public places. Who knew?

Before adding this about the men who say they felt violated but opted to stay in Spacey's orbit:

Everyone wanted something. ... I think they knew exactly what they were doing and because it didn't work out they were made -- but it doesn't raise to the level of [beyond-a-reasonable-doubt] illegal. And some of them are just outright crazy. 
I’m pissed because it was a small and fun celebrity encounter -- and turns out he did that all the time! Hahaha!!! 

But to me, the histrionic reaction to his alleged boorish behavior -- which heterosexual men, famous and unfamous, get away with constantly -- strikes me as a bit much, almost suspiciously disproportionate, given the fact that no actual harm was done to anyone. Sorry, gents: Having another man grab your ass isn't the end of the world -- and you're not owed anything because someone famous didn't help advance your career. 

Producers have every right to not hire Spacey. But these endless legal proceedings are as ridiculous as they are opportunistic. 

I've said it before but I'll say it again: I'm a big believer in the "ladies first” doctrine when it comes to the #MeToo movement. Women face a physical threat when things like this happen to them, which can escalate from a "friendly" pat to something violent in a heartbeat. Men don't. 

And if these grown men did experience discomfort, why are they returning for more? These aren't Boy Scouts who were too afraid to speak up so went back to troop meetings or altar boys who can’t bring themselves to explain why they no longer want to go to church. These are adults who are voluntarily choosing to continue to spend time with this man. 

(ADDENDUM: As I said in the opening paragraph, I couldn’t even get through the first half of this. A commenter has pointed out that some of the accusations are related to on-set behavior. That’s very different than opting to spend free time with Spacey, and I agree that all people should be allowed to work in peace. But I also think it’s no longer happening to these men and doesn’t rise to the level of lawsuits, which, again, are better left to women who should remain the focus of #MeToo.)

As a Facebook friend put it: I was amazed at how much the straight (?) dudes were willing to go along with just for the dim hope of getting a screenplay read or a chance to collaborate with Spacey.

And even his alleged minor victim -- who as a working Broadway actor in 1986 was hardly a typical teen -- concedes nothing happened to him beyond (alleged) momentary awkwardness, which is probably why none of the cases against Spacey have succeeded. (The jury hearing about the 1986 allegation cleared him in just over an hour.)

Sharon Stone homed in on what I was thinking, saying:
It was clear aspiring actors wanted and want to be around him. 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.
To which my "harassed" friend, who himself dabbled in acting back in the day. said: 
She nailed it. 

Before wistfully adding: 

And plus the interesting [period]. About not being able to be gay in Hollywood at the time, believe me, I know that one well.
Indeed he does, having been cast in a major motion picture before being replaced after a week's filming when the producers decided he seemed "too gay" in the dailies. 

My friend never acted again but went on to have a successful career in and away from La La Land. Spacey won two Academy Awards before his actions finally caught up to him and cost him his career. Life frequently isn't fair, but sometimes things do have a way of evening out -- no courts required.

UPDATE: My friend just read this post and sent the following message to me:

It’s an interesting take on the situation and I think it’s good to be talked about [and] written about. But even the first comment/response uses [the term] "sexual predator," and I think that should be reserved for someone who uses violence or illegal tactics. Yes, Spacey was aggressive, but I chalked it up to him just being a randy famous overly sexual actor. But with my history….


Jaradon said...

Spacey is a talented actor too bad he is sexual predator- I do agree that a lot of his "victims" had to know what he was up to- even the teen Broadway star- I had actor friends back then who knew what this guy was into and he was not famous yet . There is a level of homophobia that goes with these accusations even if some of the accusers are gay too

Randy Slovacek said...

Kenneth, I agree with you one hundred percent on this. Watching the documentary was an odd experience. All of the guys in the series were in it for something.

Glenn said...

Oh, man. I’ve had these same thoughts about the Spacey allegations for some time (albeit without any personal or second hand knowledge).

As the “encounters” have been described, it’s hard to imaging any of these guys having been “damaged” is the least.

JR said...

There are so many people that got caught up in the “Me Too” movement, that a lot of accusations were thrown and a lot of people would probably be shocked at the retractions and/or drop or charges due to lack of evidence.

He was exonerated from the charges - one thrown right out as it was proven that Spacey wasn’t even in the country during said unwanted advances…

Many people see this as a way of thinking, “Cha-Ching”! Always take an allegation seriously, but as they tried to make us believe 5 years ago, “always believe the victim” - no. I will when evidence has showed their truth as these allegations, if false, can completely ruin someone’s life.

Glenn said...

Agree completely with this. *Some* people (certainly not all, or even most….) try too hard to see themselves as victims, for personal advantage.

EB said...

I've been watching the documentary. Haven't seen Part 2 yet. So far, it looks like the complaining men valued their careers over self respect, I guess the way starlets allowed themselves to be taken advantage of back in the day. I didn't really see them as victims. Yes, they'd been had, but it seemed like the guys were willing to fall into the trap, thinking they could outwit Spacey.

Steven said...

Kevin Spacey was great in beginning but after awhile his arrogance bleed through his acting capabilities. He should enjoy what money he has left and enjoy an early retirement.

Norm! said...

I think everyone should be able to work without dealing with someone else's erection or getting groped regardless of the industry. I don't think the theater worker or the actor on the red carpet were using Spacey when he assaulted them.

Sure his behavior may or may not be beyond-a-reasonable-doubt illegal, but 'he didn't rape them' shouldn't be the standard. Spacey preyed on men (or younger) who were in vulnerable positions and unlikely to report him -- that's what sex predators do. He wasn't targeting his A-list co-stars.

I admit that I have a less sympathy for the straight guys who willingly went to his hotel room or apartment knowing he was flirting with them. Having to deal with an awkward pass isn't a crime and shouldn't be that traumatic.