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‘Peter Five Eight’ Director Defends Kevin Spacey: ‘He’s No Harvey Weinstein’

He doesn’t believe Spacey is comparable to Weinstein.

‘Peter Five Eight’ Director Michael Zaiko Hall spoke out about his decision to cast Spacey and defended this choice.

Hall shared with The Hollywood Reporter that the script for ‘Peter Five Eight’ was written before Spacey joined the project, and another actor was considered for the role:

“The script was written prior to Kevin’s involvement. I actually had another actor in mind, initially for Peter, but as the script came together… discussions amongst the producers started to drift toward who would be the absolute best Peter on the planet. And quickly, the discussion moved to Kevin Spacey.

Of course, this is a controversial choice, if you will. We were very cognizant about what we were embarking on by bringing this to Kevin, but we knew it would be in the interest of the film. The film would be far more compelling with Kevin as Peter.”

Hall added that Spacey does not have the same behaviors as Harvey Weinstein, Bill Cosby, or Armie Hammer:

“I don’t think Kevin is a Harvey Weinstein. I don’t think Kevin is a Bill Cosby. I would go so far as to say I don’t even think Kevin is an Armie Hammer. I read Armie Hammer’s texts, and as an amateur student of psychology, I think the man is a psychopath. I think there’s a sadism there and there’s a cruelty. With Kevin, there’s none of that. There’s absolutely none of that. There’s no cruelty. There’s no sadism. He’s a sweet man. He’s really a sweet man. This was my character assessment of him.”

Kevin Spacey was acquitted of nine charges of sexual misconduct in 2023. He was cleared of allegations made by actor Anthony Rapp after a jury in New York found insufficient evidence. ‘Peter Five Eight’ marks Spacey’s first leading role since his trial in the U.K.

Hall Claims He Supports The ‘MeToo’ Movement

Hall says it’s important to evaluate each case individually. He described Spacey as a man of integrity and stated that his experiences with Spacey on set were positive:

“Kevin Spacey is a rare talent. Of eight billion people on earth, how many people can do what Kevin does? I would say, generously, 100. He brings something powerful to the screen and I think this is one of the unfortunate side effects of cancel culture.

I support the #MeToo movement in cases where actual monsters are convicted. But I think it’s a case-by-case basis. After giving this much thought and having many discussions with Kevin and his management, I ultimately felt that this is a man of integrity…and I feel since then that that opinion has been corroborated.”

Spacey still faces a civil lawsuit in the U.K. from a man who claims Spacey assaulted him in 2008. He denied all accusations and stated that this lawsuit is not new, as it was first brought up in 2022.

‘Peter Five Eight’ is an indie thriller where Spacey plays a mysterious man in black who follows a real estate agent, played by Jet Jandreau. The film was produced by Ascent Films, Mad Honey Productions, LTD Films, and Forever Safe Productions. It is now available on various streaming services in the U.S. You can watch the trailer below.

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