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Spacey urges more U.K. funds for arts

Spacey currently serves as artistic director of London’s Old Vic theatre and has been lauded for his work in reviving the iconic venue – but the American Beauty star admits he would have struggled if he had relied on public funds for his budget.

He tells London’s Evening Standard, “I didn’t want to rely on it (public funds), because what happens if a new government comes in and it gets cut? Lo and behold, that’s exactly what’s occurred, and we are unaffected.

“I’m not feeling smug, because there are organisations that will be hit. Not the National Theatre, but the smaller spaces, the places where emerging talents learn their craft.”

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Now Spacey is urging officials to reform the tax system to make it easier for corporate sponsors to pledge donations: “If that happened there would be a flood of funding.”

And he also wants money from National Lottery funds to be spent on culture: “At the moment all the profits of the Lottery go to the Olympics, but it would give a great sense of hope if the government announced that, after 2012, 30 or 40 per cent of that money would go to the arts.”

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