Mena Suvari Breaks Silence on Kevin Spacey Allegations: 'Shocking' and 'Really Heart Wrenching'
Mena Suvari has broken her silence about the sexual assault accusations against her former American Beauty costar Kevin Spacey
“I think with everything that I’ve been seeing that everyone’s been going through, it’s shocking,” Suvari said of the allegations. “It’s really heart-wrenching.”
“It’s important to focus on the conversation that’s happening and the healing, the victims — the right thing that’s to come out of this,” she added. “That’s sort of what I try to hope for and focus on the most. It’s something that we’re truly changing and moving out of.”
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Spacey won an Oscar for 1999’s American Beauty, playing a 42-year-old advertising executive who has a midlife crisis when he becomes sexually infatuated with Suvari’s character, his teenage daughter’s best friend. The film, by director Sam Mendes, picked up four other Academy Awards including Best Picture.
Despite the controversy, Suvari still looks back on the film fondly.
“For me, having the opportunity to work on American Beauty was something that was so special and so beautiful,” Suvari said. “I was so young and was so grateful to have a job. And to be working with such experienced individuals. Everyone on that set was wonderful to me. I had a beautiful experience working on that film.”
Allegations against Spacey were first brought forward in October by actor Anthony Rapp, who alleged the actor had previously made inappropriate sexual advances toward him when he was just 14-years-old.
In response, Spacey issued a statement on Twitter addressing the allegations — and came out as gay.
“I have a lot of respect and admiration for Anthony Rapp as an actor. I’m beyond horrified to hear his story,” he said. “I honestly do not remember the encounter, it would have been over 30 years ago. But if I did behave as he describes, I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behavior, and I am sorry for the feelings he describes having carried with him all these years.”
“This story has encouraged me to address other things about my life,” Spacey continued. “I know that there are stories out there about me and that some have been fueled by the fact that I have been so protective of my privacy. As those closes to me know, in my life, I have had relationships with both men and women. I have loved and had romantic relationships with men throughout my life, and I choose now to live as a gay man. I want to deal with this honestly and openly and that starts with examining my own behavior.”
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Several more people accused the actor of sexual harassment or assault since and in April, one sexual assault case against the star reported to have taken place in October of 1992 in West Hollywood involving a male adult was turned over to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office for further review. Scotland Yard also currently has several open investigations into alleged assaults by Spacey in London.
Spacey has since been fired from the final season of his Emmy-winning Netflix drama, House of Cards.
In November, he entered a treatment facility. He has not been out in public since.
American Woman premieres June 7 (at 10 p.m. ET) on Paramount Network.