We Need to Talk about Kevin

I have pondered a lot over the past days whether to write or not about Kevin Spacey. I have been, and still am, a huge fan. I am also a public relations professional and a woman who has, like pretty much every other woman in Eastern European Romania, seen and experienced her fair share of sexual harassment or inappropriate behaviour.

I have read in horror all the witness stories written about Harvey Weinstein and empathised, just like everyone else with a pulse and a heart in the right place, with those who have been pushed around, denied roles, threatened or molested by a bully in a position of power.

But somehow, in my book, nothing that has been so far written about Kevin Spacey registers in the same way. I hear people who have been bothered by a massage in an age where sexual partners are chosen on Tinder. I hear vertically moral people bothered by a blow job in a gay bar in a country where this happens pretty much every year.

I see a world class career destroyed in a matter of days in a whirlwind of social media where anonymous comments evoke shady incidents that are literally from the last century. I see that a theatre – which has been brought back to glory from rubble and disarray by Spacey and endowed with a humongous amount of money not two years ago – is trying to ride the publicity wave by opening a “confidential email address” where people are encouraged to spill the beans on Kevin Spacey.

Leaving aside the preposterous notion of anonymous email messages or confidential email addresses, two concepts that would work today only for crass computer illiterates, the headline that this poor gang of gossipers gets in Vanity Fair says it all “Kevin Spacey’s Former Theatre Has Opened a Confidential Tip Line”. Sorry, Old Vic, for the American audiences you still are and will be Kevin Spacey’s former theatre…

I see Spacey fired, blamed, his work discarded, his awards withdrawn, his strong and, I am sure, overbearing personality condemned at every step, and yet I saw no outrage of such caliber two years ago when this came to light. Not the first time, mind you, but the third or the fourth time in ten years…

I see now Masterclass is cancelling his class on acting, Kevin Spacey being the main reason I had learned about Masterclass.com in the first place. I wonder when Dustin Hoffman will also get the axe judging by the same weird wave of morality that suddenly got into us…

I read his PR advisors and publicists are deserting him right now and trying to put some distance – and I remember all the glorious campaigns and ideas that surrounded “House of Cards” or The Old Vic every single year… I was in awe of all that… and frankly, I am disgusted by all this…

I see all this happening in a country lead by Donald Trump… I see all this happening to one of the great friends of Bill Clinton… forgive me if I really feel this is off…

I can’t rule out the possibility that I might be horribly wrong. The private lives of individuals cannot be judged objectively by outsiders. You can never know all the inner details of a crisis situation as long as you are not in the room… But I would have felt extremely hypocritical if I had not written this. Kevin Spacey was the one to make me come to London and experience world class theatre for years and years and years… He left me in awe following his performances in Richard III, Inherit the Wind, Clarence Darrow, The Usual Suspects, but also for The Life of David Gale. He left me in tears after the wildly emotional speech he delivered the night before leaving The Old Vic as a Creative Director.

This is none of my business and yet it is… cause if we start throwing shit at people and destroy careers based on gossip and we all agree that this is somehow ok, who’s gonna say who the next target is and who’s gonna wait and analyse and judge (I mean really judge) whether it was warranted or not…

Oh, and if you are looking for good movies to watch, you should try this one sometime…

HoC #4

De patru ani, primavara mea incepe cu un weekend dedicat lui Kevin Spacey. Sunt fan declarat, de multa vreme, nu doar pentru cariera sa de actor de cinema, dar si pentru cea de teatru, pentru initiativele sale in beneficiul tinerilor actori, pentru ce a lasat in urma la Old Vic, pentru geniul sau in materie de fundraising si management.

De patru ani, campaniile de promovare care preced fiecare noua serie a House of Cards sunt, pentru mine, la fel de interesante ca serialul in sine. Echipa fabuloasa adunata in jurul lui Spacey isi propune, si reuseste, sa faca, de fiecare data, nefacute. Un serial de 50 de milioane de dolari livrat sezon cu sezon, direct pe internet. Un serial filmat in 4k. O pre-vizionare a primelor sase episoade dintr-un serial american, intr-un teatru englezesc. O schimbare a comportamentului de consum pentru toate serialele – de la watching la binging. O promovare a unui joculet pe telefon (Monument Valley) care le-a adus creatorilor nu numai o caruta de bani, dar si un contract cu Mercedes. Anul acesta, alt joculet, alte product placement-uri pe care va invit sa le descoperiti.9a430b50-b30c-0133-b381-0e438b3b98d1

Continue reading “HoC #4”

Kevin Spacey Salute

La inceputul lui 2008 (nu-mi vine sa cred ca au trecut sapte ani), prietena mea care locuia in Anglia a venit cu o veste care m-a lasat masca: la Old Vic, un teatru din Londra, de langa Waterloo Station, dintr-o zona mai putin frecventata si mai putin stralucitoare, urma sa se puna in scena “Speed the Plow” un text al lui David Mamet, cu Kevin Spacey si Jeff Goldblum. Pana atunci asociasem Londra cu musicalurile si, avand vesnic putin timp la dispozitie cand ajungeam acolo, nici prin cap nu-mi trecea sa mi-l petrec la teatru, la ce piesa s-ar fi nimerit.
image Continue reading “Kevin Spacey Salute”

Cum sa construiesti un teatru

Weekendul trecut am impartasit emotiile uneia dintre ultimele reprezentatii cu “Clarence Darrow”, one-man show-ul lui Kevin Spacey la Old Vic si, probabil, ultimul sau rol in calitate de director artistic al teatrului. Un spectacol de o intensitate extraordinara, de la inceput pana la final, in care, daca aveam impresia ca actorii “ard” in intervale de 1-2 minute intre “action” si “cut” si apoi se relaxeaza o perioada nedeterminata, ne-am convins cu totii de contrariu, pe parcursul a doua ore uluitoare, electrice.

Spacey paraseste Old Vic dupa 10 ani, lasand in urma un teatru renovat, bogat (cu o zestre de 20 de milioane de lire), invidiat (casierul de la Wyndham Theatre imi povestea cu oarecare obida ce repede se dau biletele la Old Vic), cu un program exceptional pentru tinerii actori ( Old Vic New Voices) si o suita impresionanta de evenimente de caritate sau de marketing cultural.

image Continue reading “Cum sa construiesti un teatru”

Kevin Spacey petrece vara la Old Vic

22 de spectacole mai precis. Pentru stagiunea cu care isi incheie mandatul de zece ani ca Artistic Director la Old Vic, Spacey propune un one man show, “Clarence Darrow”. E un alt text care evoca un personaj real, avocatul impetuos din “Procesul maimutelor”. Pe Clarence Darrow, Spacey l-a mai jucat acum cativa ani – in “Procesul maimutelor” (“Inherit the wind”), alaturi de o distributie britanica. Atunci mi-am dat seama ca accentul sudist poate fi, pentru supusii Majestatii Sale, la fel de dificil ca acela britanic pentru baietii de peste Ocean. Rolul lui Darrow e pretios pentru Spacey si pentru ca a fost interpretat pe vremuri de Spencer Tracy, idolul sau.

In filmul cu acelasi nume, lansat in 1991, Spacey juca pentru prima oara rolul lui Darrow – putin inainte de vreme. Dar atunci cand tine la o partitura, omul nu renunta. Si va fi interesant de facut o comparatie intre formatul de film din ’91 (destul de sarman, pentru ca Spacey de atunci nu era cel pe care il stim acum, cel putin nu in ceea ce priveste influenta financiara si devastatoarea siguranta de sine) si piesa de teatru de acum. Continue reading “Kevin Spacey petrece vara la Old Vic”

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