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Last Updated: Tuesday, 4 October 2005, 17:03 GMT 18:03 UK
Spacey makes UK Shakespeare debut
Kevin Spacey
Kevin Spacey has brushed off criticism of his tenure at the Old Vic
Actor Kevin Spacey made his UK Shakespearean debut on Tuesday as he launched his second season as artistic director of the Old Vic Theatre.

The Hollywood star plays Richard II, directed by former National Theatre boss Trevor Nunn.

It comes after Spacey's first season in charge of the London venue was met with mixed reviews.

His first productions have generated solid box office business but critics have questioned his choice of plays.


Spacey was hailed as the saviour of the historic venue, but plays including Cloaca, The Philadelphia Story and National Anthems have received lukewarm reviews.

Richard II is seen as a heavyweight production that could improve his fortunes as artistic director.

Spacey recently said he had "no regrets at all" about his first year in charge. "I walked in expecting to come under criticism," he said.

Of Richard II, he said: "I'm doing my level best to be convincing as an English king."

Forthcoming productions include one of Arthur Miller's final plays, Resurrection Blues, which will be the first London play to be directed by film-maker Robert Altman.

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