As he prepares to take 6 weeks off from The Philadelphia Story to star in the next Superman movie, Kevin Spacey says that he is upbeat about his first Old Vic season despite poor reviews.
"Please don't feel sorry for us just because we've had some bad reviews," he told US theatre journalists. "We have around 1,050 people here every night. Sometimes the critics will be with you and sometimes they won't. The audiences have been with us. I love coming to work every day."
"We set out with one aim this first season – to fill this theatre," said Spacey. "We've had a quarter of a million people through the doors over the course of four plays. We more or less equalled the West End records for the advance ticket sales for a play."
Spacey said that he had "expected" a mauling from the critics, but was relieved that the reviews had been less personal that he had feared.
The poor state of the building, which stands on the corner of The Cut and Waterloo Road, is one of Spacey's big concerns: "We need about £20 million to renovate the theatre, so that in fifty years this building is still standing," he said.
Meanwhile some theatregoers have been disappointed to find that Spacey won't be appearing in the current production of The Philadelphia Story between mid-June and the beginning of August whilst he films the role of Lex Luther for the next Superman movie. The Old Vic denies any misrepresentation, though some people have apparently demanded refunds.
Adrian Lukis will take over the role of CK Dexter Haven in Spacey's absence.