Kevin Spacey in 'Peter Five Eight'

The director of Kevin Spacey’s comeback film has defended his casting of the actor, following the allegations that had been made against him.

In July, Spacey was acquitted of all nine charges he was facing, including seven counts of sexual assault, one count of causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent, and one count of causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity.

And now, Spacey is set to star in the action thriller Peter Five Eight, his first leading role since the allegations derailed his career in 2017. He plays an assassin who is called to a mountainous community to track down a glamorous real estate agent, played by Jet Jandreau. The film is released on March 22.

The film’s director, Michael Zaiko Hall, has said in an interview with Unilad: “Now with Kevin – he came up early in casting discussions as the most perfect Peter on the planet. No one can play that role better than Spacey. As it turned out, Kevin is also a huge film buff and understood the reference points, stylistic cues, and easter eggs in the script.”

“Naturally there were discussions amongst the producers about [casting Spacey for his first lead role in seven years]. It’s a sensitive topic, and we’re respectful to all sides. As flawed as it may be at times, I do believe in the criminal justice system.”

“This is where innuendo and allegations are put under the microscope and looked at intensely from all angles. The allegations against him were put to the test and he was exonerated.”

“There will be voices online that say bad things about the movie and those involved, because they worked with Kevin. I do feel that they are a relatively small group,” he added. “I don’t think artistic endeavors should be governed by negativity. They should be governed by inspiration.”

In October, Spacey made his first return to the stage since being cleared. He performed a brief scene from Shakespeare’s Timon of Athens at a theatre in Oxford, during a lecture held in memory of the late conservative philosopher Roger Scruton. Spacey received a standing ovation for the performance.

Spacey recently rekindled his tradition of appearing in a strange new video for Christmas, reviving his House of Cards role of Frank Underwood. He appeared in character with Tucker Carlson in a seven-minute ‘interview’ in which they discussed the upcoming presidential election and the state of the media.

The post Director defends casting Kevin Spacey in new action thriller appeared first on NME.


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