London’s Old Vic Theater Received 20 Accusations Against Kevin Spacey

Theater management says Spacey's "cult of personality" kept people quiet.

Kevin Spacey is already facing allegations of sexual assault and harassment in the U.S. Now some 20 actors and staffers at London’s iconic Old Vic Theater have come forward with accusations. Spacey was previously artistic director from 2004 to 2015.

Theater management says Spacey’s “cult of personality” kept people quiet, but an investigation was launched in October.

“The investigation found that his stardom and status at The Old Vic 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.”

All the alleged victims are young men, though none were under 18 at the time, between 1995 and 2013. Only one reported the incident at the time, but his manager did not act on the claim. The Old Vic said it had encouraged 14 of the complainants to go to authorities.

The theater insists there was not widespread knowledge of the Oscar winner’s behavior, which ranged from something that made people uncomfortable to sexually inappropriate. It deflected criticism it hadn’t come forward earlier, claiming it was important to conduct its own investigation before issuing a statement.

“We have not slept since this came out, because we have been working incredibly hard to do this in a robust and detailed and measured and careful way. It would have been easy for us to make a quick statement,” said Old Vicexecutive director Kate Varah. “It was not appropriate for us to do that because of the nature of the allegations.”

Dan Avery is a writer-editor who focuses on culture, breaking news and LGBT rights. His work has appeared in Newsweek, The New York Times, Time Out New York, The Advocate and elsewhere.
@ItsDanAvery