Kevin Spacey Accuser Anthony Rapp Says Watching Actor In ‘American Beauty’ Was ‘Unpleasantly Familiar’

Anthony Rapp claims Kevin Spacey sexually assaulted him when he was 14-years-old and was questioned during the sexual misconduct trial on Tuesday.

Reading Time: 3 minutes
Anthony Rapp, Kevin Spacey
View gallery
Image Credit: Yuki Iwamura/AP/Peter Foley/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

UPDATE (10/20/22): Kevin Spacey was found not liable in the Anthony Rapp sexual assault lawsuit on Thursday, October 20, 2022. Per The Washington Post, the New York jury did not award Rapp the $40 million damages he sought in the case. Jennifer Keller, Kevin’s attorney, reportedly stated to the outlet that the actor is “is grateful to live in a country where the citizens have a right to trial by impartial jurors who make their decision based on evidence and not rumor or social media,” and said that “justice was done today.” Through his lawyer Richard Steigman in an email to the newspaper, Anthony also reacted. “Anthony told his truth in court,” Steigman wrote. “While we respect the jury’s verdict, nothing changes that.”

Anthony Rapp testified in a Manhattan courtroom on Oct. 11 and spoke about the trauma he’s had since Kevin Spacey allegedly sexually assaulted him more than 30 years ago. The actor, who is best known for his role on Broadway’s Rent, reportedly talked about the alleged incident in which Kevin, now 63, picked him up out of bed while he was watching TV and pressed against him before he managed to get away, while being questioned by the fellow actor’s defense lawyer, Jennifer Keller, during the sexual misconduct trial for the case. He also mentioned that when he watched some of Kevin’s movies, like American Beauty, in which Kevin’s grown character has a relationship with a teenage girl, he felt uncomfortable, according to the Associated Press.

“It felt unpleasantly familiar,” Anthony, now 50, apparently said during his testimony. “It was upsetting.” He also reportedly mentioned he was afraid he’d accidentally see Kevin again after the alleged sexual assault happened, and when he watched Working Girl in 1988, he wasn’t aware that he was in the film. Once he saw him on the screen, his body suddenly filled with adrenaline and his palms grew sweaty. “It was as if someone poked me with a cattle prodder,” he said, the outlet further reported.

Anthony Rapp
Anthony Rapp. left, testified in the civil trial against Kevin Spacey on Tuesday. (Yuki Iwamura/AP/Shutterstock)

In addition to the reactions he had in seeing some of Kevin’s movies, Anthony described the alleged sexual assault incident, which Kevin denies, in detail when being cross examined by Keller. He claimed that after meeting backstage at one of Kevin’s Broadway shows, the Horrible Bosses star invited him and an older friend to a nightclub, and days later, he invited him to a party at his apartment, where the alleged incident took place.

Anthony claimed he was watching TV in one of the bedrooms when Kevin entered. “He picked me up like a groom picks up a bride,” he reportedly testified, adding that he felt Kevin press “his pelvis into my hip” before he “managed to squirm away” and left. Kevin was at the court at the time of the testimony and Anthony admitted it was “extremely difficult” seeing him again but said he was doing it so “maybe [he] could help others,” AP reported.

Kevin Spacey
Kevin Spacey in ‘American Beauty.’ (Dreamworks/Kobal/Shutterstock)

Anthony’s testimony comes almost five years after he first accused Kevin of the sexual assault, in an interview with BuzzFeed. After the claim made headlines, Kevin was fired from his role in House of Cards and replaced in All the Money in the World. Many other accusations against him also came out, including a 2018 lawsuit in which he allegedly raped a young man and and a charge of sexually assaulting three men in the U.K. He pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Anthony is expected to continue his testimony in the courtroom on Wednesday. He’s seeking $40 million in compensatory and punitive damages for battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress, according to Reuters.

More From Our Partners