According to a final arbitration ruling issued on Monday, Kevin Spacey and his production businesses must pay more than $30 million to the studio behind House of Cards for losses incurred as a result of his termination for alleged sexual misconduct.
According to a document filed in Los Angeles superior court seeking approval of the ruling, the arbitrators determined that Spacey violated his contract's requirements for professional conduct by engaging in "certain conduct in connection with several crew members in each of the five seasons of House of Cards that he starred in and executive produced."
The letter claimed that MRC, the studio behind House of Cards, was forced to terminate Spacey, halt production on the show's sixth season, rework it to eliminate Spacey's essential character, and cut it from 13 to eight episodes to meet deadlines, resulting in tens of millions of dollars in losses.
"MRC places a premium on the safety of our employees, sets, and work environments, which is why we are pursuing accountability," MRC stated in a statement on Monday.
Spacey's representative did not immediately respond to a request for comment through email. His defenders contended that the actor's conduct did not significantly affect the show's demise.
The verdict came after a more than three-year legal battle and an eight-day evidentiary hearing kept as secret as the rest of the case.
Spacey challenged the verdict to a panel of three additional private arbitrators, who ruled in favor of the plaintiffs on Monday, making the ruling final and public.
"MRC stood its ground, pursued this case tenaciously, and prevailed," plaintiff's attorney Michael Kump said in a statement.
Late in 2017, as the #MeToo movement gained steam, the 62-year-old Oscar winner's career came to an abrupt halt.
Anthony Rapp, who played in Rent on Broadway and in film and Star Trek: Discovery on television, claimed that Spacey made an unwanted sexual attempt on him in the 1980s when he was 14.
At the time, Spacey wrote a statement apologizing for not recalling the encounter.
Numerous further accusations followed. Specific individuals, including Rapp, have brought lawsuits.
Independent investigations discovered pervasive sexual harassment of subordinates.
Spacey was sacked or dropped from several projects, most notably House of Cards, the Netflix political thriller. He starred as Frank Underwood, a power-crazed lawmaker who became president.
His only criminal case, an indecent assault and battery accusation coming from the groping of an 18-year-old male at a Nantucket resort was dismissed by Massachusetts authorities in 2019.