Anthony Rapp’s lawsuit against Kevin Spacey will proceed with pretrial arguments

Anthony Rapp, left, and Kevin Spacey.
Anthony Rapp, left, is suing Kevin Spacey in New York federal court for assault, battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
(Associated Press)

The first man to publicly accuse Kevin Spacey of inappropriate sexual advances will see his civil suit discussed in New York federal court Thursday afternoon.

Pretrial arguments are expected from legal teams on both sides in Anthony Rapp’s assault and battery case against the former “House of Cards” actor, according to Fox News. Rapp is suing Spacey for assault, battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Rapp’s allegations against Spacey, first made in 2001 in an Advocate article that didn’t identify the Oscar winner and then revived in a 2017 Buzzfeed article with the star’s name revealed, became the first domino in a sequence of many allegations in the U.S. and U.K. that would ultimately take down Spacey’s career.


In 2017, the original-cast “Rent” actor said Spacey had befriended him in 1986, when Rapp was 14 and Spacey was 26, and both were acting on Broadway. Then, Rapp alleged, he was invited to Spacey’s for a party, after which his host picked him up, put him on a bed and climbed on top of him, making a sexual advance. Rapp said he escaped to a bathroom.

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Rapp and a co-defendant known only as “C.D.” filed the lawsuit in September 2020 with the Supreme Court in New York. It was later moved to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

However, C.D. — a student of Spacey’s in the 1980s who alleged the actor engaged in sex with him and tried to sodomize him when he was around 14 — would not reveal his identity to the court and was dropped from the case this past June.

Other court proceedings against the actor, who came out as gay after Rapp’s accusations went public, haven’t succeeded.

A federal sexual-assault case brought against Spacey in L.A. by a massage therapist was dropped in December 2019 after the masseur died. He had alleged that he was forced to touch the actor’s genitals during a 2016 massage at Spacey’s home. Prosecutors declined to file criminal charges.

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A criminal case brought against Spacey was dropped in July 2019 after the son of a Boston TV anchor refused to testify. A civil suit filed in tandem was similarly tossed. The son had alleged that Spacey plied him with alcohol and sexually assaulted him in June 2016 at the Club Car restaurant in Nantucket, Mass., where the then-18-year-old man worked as a busboy.


More recently, this past May, Spacey landed his first acting gig in three years, a small part as a police detective in the Italian indie movie “L’uomo Che Disegnò Dio.” The actor has not been seen in any new work since 2018’s “Billionaire Boys Club.”

Thursday’s hearing is scheduled for 3 p.m. Eastern time.