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Tuesday, 26 November, 2002, 19:06 GMT
Spacey gives something back
Kevin Spacey is behind the new website
Kevin Spacey: giving a helping hand to new film-makers
Stephen Dowling

When Kevin Spacey was starting out as an actor, he got the biggest of helping hands.

The late Jack Lemmon - actor and producer - was Spacey's mentor when he was learning his craft.

Kevin Spacey has always remembered that. Now he's doing his own bit to help new talent.

The actor famous for roles in The Usual Suspects and American Beauty has helped set up a website that brings attention to so-far-unnoticed scriptwriters, directors and playwrights.

Triggerstreet.com aims to be a spotlight for people who haven't yet got the attention of producers and studios.

Boost

At its UK launch in central London on Tuesday, Spacey said Triggerstreet.com was a much-needed boost for new talent to get their work seen.

He was accompanied by Dana Burnetti, the company's president.
If we were doing this in the days before the internet, we couldn't hire enough staff to look through all the scripts

Kevin Spacey

"If it wasn't for the first time playwrights and the first-time film-makers, who chucked their stuff over the wall, when I began in this business, I wouldn't have this career," the Oscar-winning actor said. "There are so few places for them to show their material."

Young writers and film-makers can upload their short films and scripts, and get reviews from their fellows. All Triggerstreet.com asks is that they return the favour and review two films or scripts themselves.

The site itself nominates one film or script to make sure all submissions get a chance to be seen.
Spacey in American Beauty
Spacey won the best actor Oscar for his role in American Beauty

Thanks to corporate sponsorship it's free. The most popular films get put into a mini-online film festival judged by Hollywood actors and directors, including Danny DeVito and Cameron Crowe.

The site was launched in the US two weeks ago. At the launch party, Spacey said, he bumped into a small crowd looking at one of the submitted short films on a huge plasma screen.

That small group included comedian Billy Crystal, rock singer Sheryl Crow and actor Sidney Pollack.

Spacey said: "That person probably never thought people of that calibre would watch their movie, let alone all at the same time."

Members

Triggerstreet.com has already got 28,000 registered members and over 13,000 reviews - more than 450 films are available to watch and another 400 screenplays have been loaded on to the site.

"If we were doing this in the days before the internet, and asked people to send stuff to a PO Box number, we couldn't hire enough staff to look through all the scripts," he said.

Spacey admitted that his own production company - Triggerstreet Productions - has a 90-day option on any of the scripts.

He did not rule out that a script on the site could be given the green light from his own company: "It's certainly a possibility, but it's not our intention".

Whether Hollywood stars of tomorrow are made through Triggerstreet, however, is not Spacey's main concern.

"It's about passion, not a prize," he said.

See also:

26 Nov 02 | Entertainment
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