Kevin Spacey's deflective statement sparks outrage on social media
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Kevin Spacey statement about sexual assault allegations sparks outrage on social media

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In an interview published by BuzzFeed on Sunday evening, Star Trek: Discovery actor Anthony Rapp alleged that, in 1986, when he was just 14-years-old, Kevin Spacey, who was 26-years-old at the time, made a sexual advance towards him after a party at Spacey’s apartment.

“He picked me up like a groom picks up the bride over the threshold,” Rapp said about Spacey. “But I don’t, like, squirm away initially, because I’m like, ‘What’s going on?’ And then he lays down on top of me.” Though he doesn’t recall how long Spacey was on top of him, Rapp said he was able to “squirm away” and “was aware that he was trying to get with me sexually.”

Nearly three hours after the report was published, Spacey issued a statement via Twitter, claiming he was “beyond horrified” to hear Rapp’s story but does not remember the encounter, as “it would have been over 30 years ago.” After apologizing to Rapp for “what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behavior,” Spacey then went on to reveal that he has “had relationships with both men and women” and now chooses “to live as a gay man.”

Here is Spacey’s statement in full:

However, Spacey’s statement, which has now been retweeted over 24,000 times at press time, has since ignited plenty of outrage, frustration, and controversy on social media, with Dan Savage, co-founder of It Gets Better, being among the first to condemn the actor’s statement. “Nope to Kevin Spacey’s statement. Nope. There’s no amount of drunk or closeted that excuses or explains away assaulting a 14-year-old child,” Savage tweeted.

“Coming out is a beautiful part of being gay. Attaching it to this vileness is so wrong,’ author Mark Harris wrote, while actress Rose McGowan called upon the media to “keep focus” on Anthony Rapp and “help us level the playing field.” Billy on the Street host Billy Eichner, perhaps echoing Savage’s sentiments, simply tweeted, “Nope. Absolutely not. Nope.”

The allegations against Spacey from Rapp could be the first of many against the actor,  who has famously kept many aspects of his personal life private and away from the spotlight. Shortly after BuzzFeed published their interview with Rapp last night, one source, who works as a freelance journalist, confirmed to me that they are “working on a Spacey story” and “have been” for quite some time.

Meanwhile, Rapp, who, before the BuzzFeed interview was published, had only shared his experience with Spacey with close friends and a few select others over the past 31 years, says that he “came forward with [his] story, standing on the shoulders of the many courageous women and men who have been speaking out to shine a light and hopefully make a difference, as they have done for me.”

“Everything I wanted to say about my experience is in that article, and I have no further comment about it at this time,” Rapp concluded.

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Amid an intense wave of backlash, the Academy has decided to air all Oscar categories live

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Oscars
MATT SAYLES/INVISION

In the wake of an intense wave of backlash, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Friday that they will be reversing their controversial decision to present four technical categories their awards during commercial breaks at the 91st Oscars ceremony next Sunday.

“The Academy has heard the feedback from its membership regarding the Oscar presentation of four awards – Cinematography, Film Editing, Live Action Short, and Makeup and Hairstyling,” the AMPAS board of governors said in a statement. “All Academy Awards will be presented without edits, in our traditional format.”

Sources familiar with the matter tell Silver Screen Beat that the Academy’s change of heart came after AMPAS president John Bailey and CEO Dawn Hudson met with members of the group’s cinematography branch Thursday evening to discuss the decision, which did not go over well with many Hollywood filmmakers and craftspeople.

“Relegating these essential cinematic crafts to lesser status in this 91st Academy Awards ceremony is nothing less than an insult to those of us who have devoted our lives and passions to our chosen profession,” read an open letter to the Academy signed by dozens of industry figures, including directors Martin Scorsese and Spike Lee and cinematographers Roger Deakins and Rachel Morrison.

The letter ends with a quote from Academy member Seth Rogen, who tweeted earlier this week, “What better way to celebrate achievements in film than to NOT publicly honour the people whose job it is to film things.”

The 91st Oscars will air live from the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday, February 24 on ABC.

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‘Star Wars: Episode IX’ officially wraps principal photography with an emotional cast photo

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Star Wars: Episode IX
LUCASFILM LTD.

Star Wars: Episode IX director J.J. Abrams announced today via Twitter that the highly anticipated final chapter in the Skywalker saga has officially wrapped principal photography, leading us to believe that our first look at the film could be just around the corner.

“It feels impossible, but today wrapped photography on Episode IX. There is no adequate way to thank this truly magical crew and cast. I’m forever indebted to you all,” Abrams wrote in his tweet this afternoon.

Abrams’ tweet also includes an emotional set photo featuring cast members Daisy Ridley, who plays Rey, John Boyega, who plays Finn, and Oscar Isaac, who plays Poe Dameron, embracing on their final day of shooting.

“That’s a wrap on Star Wars episode 9 and the end to a chapter of my life that I couldn’t be more thankful for,” Boyega wrote in a tweet of is own. “What a process! It really has been a joy to be in these movies surrounded by amazing people. JJ, thank you for making my dreams come true.”

Abrams, who launched a new era of Star Wars with The Force Awakens in 2015, will now take Episode IX to the editing bay, where it will remain in post-production for the next 10 months or so until its December 20 release date.

You can check out the tweets from Abrams and Boyega below.

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Seth Rogen and Charlize Theron strike up a hilarious romance in the first ‘Long Shot’ trailer

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Long Shot
LIONSGATE

Ahead of the film’s world premiere at the South by Southwest Film Festival next month, Lionsgate has released the first trailer for Long Shot, the eagerly awaited romantic comedy starring Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen from The Night Before and 50/50 director Jonathan Levine.

Long Shot follows Fred Flarsky (Rogen), an unemployed journalist who reunites with his first crush (and former babysitter) Charlotte Field (Theron), one of the most influential women in the world. As she begins eyeing a run for the Presidency, she hires Fred as her speechwriter, making him a fish out of water on her elite team.

However, despite Fred’s unpreparedness for her glamorous lifestyle in the limelight, sparks begin to fly as their unmistakable chemistry leads to a round-the-world romance and a serious of unexpected (and somewhat dangerous) incidents.

In addition to the dynamic duo that is Rogen and Theron, Long Shot‘s incredible ensemble cast also includes the likes of O’Shea Jackson Jr., Alexander Skarsgård, Andy Serkis, Ravi Patel, Randall Park, and June Diane Raphael.

Long Shot will have its world premiere at South by Southwest on March 9 before opening in theaters nationwide on May 3.

You can check out the newly released trailer for the film below.

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