Kevin Spacey’s net worth is estimated to be around $100 million, according to multiple net worth calculators and celebrity finance sites. However, precise figures are hard to obtain due to the private nature of his finances and the impacts of scandals later in his career.
His fortune comes mostly from his long and successful acting career starting in the 1980s and spanning theater, film and television. Some major contributors over the years likely include movies like The Usual Suspects and American Beauty, along with his starring role on the popular TV series House of Cards.
However, his career prospects and incoming earnings have slowed down considerably since 2017, when controversies and allegations emerged about his inappropriate sexual behavior. As a result, his current net worth is lower than the peak of over $120 million as recently as 2016.
Early Life and Career Beginnings
Kevin Spacey Fowler was born on July 26, 1959 in South Orange, New Jersey. His family moved frequently during his childhood due to his father’s job loss and strained finances before eventually settling in California.
He attended Los Angeles Valley College and the prestigious Juilliard School in New York City, graduating from the latter’s theater program in 1981. This cemented Spacey’s passion for acting and theater.
In the 1980s, Spacey gradually built up experience and acclaim through performances in Broadway plays, The New York Shakespeare Festival, TV guest spots and small movie roles.
His first notable big screen appearance was a supporting role in the 1986 Mike Nichols film Heartburn. More prominent movie parts soon followed in titles like Rocket Gibraltar (1988) and Glengarry Glen Ross (1992).
Spacey’s Breakthrough: The Usual Suspects and Beyond
Kevin Spacey had his major Hollywood breakthrough in the acclaimed 1995 neo-noir film The Usual Suspects. His portrayal of manipulative villain Roger “Verbal” Kint won him an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.
The next year he cemented his stardom by starring in the indie hit film Swimming with Sharks (1994) followed by Seven (1995) opposite A-listers like Brad Pitt.
In 1999, Spacey reached new heights with American Beauty, playing suburban husband Lester Burnham undergoing a midlife crisis. He won the Oscar for Best Actor for his performance.
|Lifetime Gross Earnings*
|Glengarry Glen Ross
|The Usual Suspects
*- Figures are approximate career earnings until each title.
He worked consistently in the early 2000s with films like K-Pax (2001), The Shipping News (2001), The Life of David Gale (2003) and Beyond the Sea (2004).
In 2006, he played Superman’s nemesis Lex Luthor in the big budget blockbuster Superman Returns. According to Celebrity Net Worth, he earned a paycheck of $10 million just for that film alone.
For over a decade, Spacey was considered one of Hollywood’s top dramatic actors based on his performances and box office success. His skillset even extended to comedy, writing, producing and directing.
House of Cards and Peak Wealth Years
A new phase of critical acclaim and wealth came for Kevin Spacey from 2013 to 2017 thanks to the award-winning Netflix political series House of Cards.
He was cast as the lead character Frank Underwood, a ruthless politician willing to do anything for power. The role leveraged Spacey’s strength at portraying morally ambiguous figures.
House of Cards was Netflix’s first big push into producing exclusive original content, and Spacey’s involvement was a major factor that drove viewership and subscriptions.
For the first five seasons, Kevin Spacey was reportedly earning around $9 million per season of House of Cards.
Between that major TV payday plus residuals and new movie projects like Baby Driver, his peak net worth likely reached over $120 million by 2016. The timing coincided with him being consistently ranked as one of the highest-paid performers in the world on Forbes lists during those years.
An End to Major Income Sources
However, scandal struck in October 2017 when actor Anthony Rapp accused Spacey of making an inappropriate sexual advance in the 1980s when Rapp was only 14 years old.
In the wake of the #MeToo movement, more people began speaking out about disturbing encounters with Spacey, some involving underage teens.
The public backlash was swift, with Spacey quickly fired from House of Cards and removed from the upcoming film All the Money in the World in favor of Christopher Plummer.
Dozens of projects cut ties with him after that, with only Billionaire Boys Club (shot pre-scandal) being released to dismal box office performance and reviews.
No new film or television offers have come for Spacey since 2017 besides some minor foreign productions.
His career prospects remain low four years later with the allegations still lingering, though his legal cases continue to develop.
As a result, Kevin Spacey’s net worth has likely dropped from its height but stabilized somewhere around $100 million currently. A large chunk is from prudent investments and savings accumulated in earlier years.
Lawsuits and Legal Issues
In addition to massive career setbacks, Kevin Spacey has faced a series of lawsuits from accusers starting in late 2018. The most high profile case concluded in mid-2022.
Massachusetts Lawsuit – Dismissed
In July 2018, Spacey was sued for allegedly groping a 18-year old busboy in 2016 at a Nantucket bar, where the legal age of consent is 18. The accuser claimed emotional injury from the encounter.
Spacey pleaded not guilty to charges of felony indecent assault and battery in January 2019. The case moved to trial in Massachusetts state court later that year.
However, the lawsuit against Spacey was dropped in July 2019 after the accuser refused to testify about a missing cellphone containing evidence.
It was alleged the accuser and his mother deleted texts and other information favorable to Spacey’s defense. The young man subsequently dropped the civil lawsuit as well a few weeks later.
So while the experience was likely unpleasant and involved legal costs for Spacey, the main case ultimately ended without damages being awarded or plea deals made.
Other Civil Lawsuits
At least three other U.S. civil cases were filed against Kevin Spacey between 2018 and 2020, requesting financial damages for assault and emotional trauma:
- September 2018: An anonymous male massage therapist in Los Angeles claimed Spacey attempted to fondle him and forced him to grab Spacey’s genitals during a session. He is seeking $40 million in damages.
- May 2020: Actor Anthony Rapp (original 2017 accuser) filed suit against Spacey for making an unwanted sexual advance during a party in 1986 when Rapp was 14. He is seeking $40 million in damages.
- August 2020: A New York man accused Spacey of grooming and assaulting him in the 1980s when he was 12 to 14 years old. He is seeking $40 million in damages.
The 2020 cases were expected to move forward to discovery and potential trial, so they still present legal issues for Spacey that could affect his net worth if damages are awarded.
However, in November 2022, Rapp’s lawsuit was dismissed by a federal judge due to lack of evidence. The accuser still has options to appeal but it was a setback.
The other cases have had varied procedural developments but not yet been ruled on. Spacey continues his legal defense that all encounters were consensual.
Compared to the Netflix salary loss, movie career nosedive and bad PR hit to his brand though, the monetary impacts of lawsuits so far likely comprise a smaller effect on Spacey’s current net worth.
In summary, Kevin Spacey accumulated a personal net worth likely exceeding $100 million during his acting career until it peaked around 2016-2017. For over a decade he earned tens of millions from being one of Hollywood’s top actors in both film and eventually a popular Netflix series.
However, serious accusations of sexual misconduct caused a public relations implosion starting in late 2017 that torpedoed Spacey’s career and income streams. He was severed from the production House of Cards that was paying him millions per year. Combined with reputational damage that blacklisted him across the industry, Spacey’s annual earnings dropped to virtually zero after 2017.
Lawsuits and legal issues continue, but so far most major cases ended favorably for Spacey or remain unresolved. Therefore while the controversies likely cut into his net worth substantially, prudent investments and savings from earlier productive years still leave Kevin Spacey with current wealth of around $100 million by estimates. However, his reputation and future acting prospects remain in doubt unless further legal exoneration occurs.
FAQ About Kevin Spacey’s Net Worth
Table for frequently asked questions about Kevin Spacey’s net worth with answers.
|What was Kevin Spacey’s peak career net worth?
|Spacey’s net worth likely peaked between 2016 to 2017 around $120 million or more. At that time he was earning $9 million per season from House of Cards plus movie salaries and investment income.
|What happened to Kevin Spacey’s net worth after 2017 scandals?
|His net worth declined substantially (possibly $20 to $50+ million loss) after being fired from House of Cards and having his career prospects dry up from the controversies. But he still retains a current net worth of around $100 million.
|How much could legal judgments against Spacey be?
|Current civil lawsuits are seeking around $40 million each in damages. If any obtain legal victories, multi-million dollar judgments could put a dent in Spacey’s remaining wealth. But so far one major case was already dismissed.
|Does Kevin Spacey still act or make money from entertainment?
|Since late 2017, Spacey’s only acting credit was the 2018 film Billionaire Boys Club which flopped. He has earned no known income from Hollywood since then. His focus is now legal defense.
|When did Kevin Spacey become wealthy from acting?
|He started making a name for himself in plays and movies in the mid-1980s. His net worth first crossed into multi-millions in the 1990s after acclaimed performances in films like The Usual Suspects, Seven and others.