Los Angeles: Hollywood movie star Kevin Spacey will have to pay $31 million to the production company that fired him from “House of Cards” after allegations of sexual harassment arose, a judge ruled Thursday, dismissing his appeal against arbitration.
The ruling is the latest blow for a man once heralded as one of the finest actors of his generation, and comes weeks after he appeared in a British court charged with sexually assaulting three men.
MRC, the production company that made the popular Netflix tale of political intrigue, sought the damages after booting the star from the lead role, a move that forced them to reconfigure the show’s sixth season.
An arbitrator in 2020 ordered the “American Beauty” actor to compensate the company for losses and costs associated with the change.
Spacey’s lawyers had argued that the arbitrator exceeded the scope of his powers by considering certain evidence in deciding damages.
But Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Mel Red Recana confirmed the award of $29.5 million in damages and the remainder in costs and fees.
The arbitrator had found that Spacey was in breach of his contract because of his alleged behavior, the judge said, noting that even if the matter was not so clear-cut, the arbitrator’s award would stand.
“Here, (Spacey) fails to demonstrate that this is even a close case,” Recana wrote in his 14-page ruling.
Spacey has denied sexually harassing anyone.