Kevin Spacey Seeks To Vacate $31 Million ‘House of Cards’ Arbitration Judgment

Photo Jolanda Flubacher

Citing “factual and legal errors,” attorneys for actor Kevin Spacey hope to vacate an arbitration judgment that he pay $31 million to the production company behind the Netflix hit show, House of Cards.

Spacey’s attorneys assert that the embattled actor’s behavior was not unique or out of place, but rather part of a comprehensive “on-set culture”​​ that was “filled with sexual innuendoes, jokes and innocent horseplay.”

MRC, part-owner of entertainment industry trade publication The Hollywood Reporter and the production company behind the award-winning show, won its arbitration ruling against Spacey in 2020 and was awarded $31 million in damages late last year. MRC argued Spacey’s conduct on set gave them no option but to fire him from House of Card’s midway through the sixth and final season. 

Spacey’s Production Company Brought House of Cards To Fledgling Streaming Company

Spacey and his production company brought the series to Netflix and were primarily responsible for Netflix’s rise in popularity—and market share—beginning in 2013. Following Spacey’s removal from the show, Netflix cut the total episode count for the final season from thirteen to eight. 

See: Kevin Spacey Sexual Assault Allegations: What You Don’t Know

MRC filed a petition in civil court last year, making their November 22, 2022 judgment public. On Friday, Spacey’s attorneys filed a response to the petition requesting the award be tossed out. They argued the award itself was “permeated with factual and legal errors” and that MRC failed to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that their client, Spacey, harassed five former HOC crew members. 

Response to The arbitration judgement for $31 Million

“The truth is that while Spacey participated in a pervasive on-set culture that was filled with sexual innuendoes, jokes, and innocent horseplay.” Spacey’s attorneys affirm, “he never sexually harassed anyone.” 

“In fact,” Spacey’s attorneys continue in the response, “as the evidence established and the Arbitrator recognized in the award, the few times Spacey was told that his conduct made someone feel uncomfortable or was in any way unwanted, he stopped.” 

Finally, they added that the only crew-member who claimed that Spacey ever attempted to actually engage in any type of sexual activity with them was found to be “uncredible” by the Arbitrator.

Spacey first faced allegation of misconduct in 2017 in which actor Anthony Rapp accused Spacey of misconduct—in an interview with longtime friend and BuzzFeed Buffyverse writer Adam B Vary.

As part of The Independent Observer’s commitment to this story, we will be providing ongoing coverage of Rapp’s lawsuit against Kevin Spacey, sexual assault allegations, production company arbitration, and where is Kevin Spacey now.

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Ana Chevalier ( is an award-winning author, former journalist, and playwright. Her work has appeared in global publications including Toronto Star, Baltimore Sun, The Independent (UK), The Telegraph (UK), The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Jerusalem Post, Forbes, YahooNews, and many more. Ana is a former child-actor/ entertainer, winning multiple awards for her work. She has worked with Emmy, Golden Globe, Oscar, and Tony award winners (EGOT!) and Grand Ole Opry members on a variety of projects on and off-stage.

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