Actor Kevin Spacey read a poem about a worn-out and dejected boxer during an unexpected performance at a Rome museum Friday night, weeks after a criminal sexual misconduct case against him collapsed in Massachusetts.
Spacey’s appearance at the National Roman Museum was not publicly announced in advance. The museum had posted a cryptic notice on its website saying a two-time Oscar winner would be reading works by Italian poet Gabriele Tinti during a rare evening event – but didn’t name the person.
During the reading, Spacey stood next to an ancient Greek bronze statue of a battered fighter while reciting Tinti’s “The Boxer.” The poem is about a fighter left bleeding at ringside, cast aside despite previous glory
Anyone familiar with the rapid downward course of the former “House of Cards” actor’s career after sexual misconduct allegations were made against him in 2017 would have an easy time finding meaning between the lines.
Video clips published in Italian media and by U.S. news site The Daily Beast show Spacey dramatically intoning the verses, including one reading: “The more you are wounded, the greater you are. And the more empty you are. They used me for their entertainment, fed on shoddy stuff. Life was over in a moment.”
Barbie Latza Nadeau, The Daily Beast’s Rome correspondent, said four journalists were invited to the reading and promised sit-down interviews with Spacey that did not materialize.
“Everyone in the tiny room was left speechless by Spacey’s unapologetic performance. By the time it was over, a bigger crowd had gathered outside, and he read the whole poem again to them,” Latza Nadeau wrote.
The former “House of Cards” star is still being investigated in London and Los Angeles over several allegations and faces a federal lawsuit alleging he assaulted a massage therapist.
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