(Below is from Politico — link to full interview at the end of the excerpt below)
Kevin Spacey comes to Washington
By CAITLIN MCDEVITT |
Though he makes Washington look horrible in “House of Cards,” Kevin Spacey is throwing a party here this weekend.
The Oscar winner will host a fundraiser for his foundation at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel on Saturday. (Don’t worry, Rep. Frances Underwood isn’t invited.) The evening’s proceeds benefit The Kevin Spacey Foundation, which supports aspiring actors and filmmakers, and the children’s charity Only Make Believe.
Ahead of the event, Spacey chatted with POLITICO about the gala, his Beltway friends and the politics of “House of Cards”:
So what brings you to Washington? Well, we’re doing one of the first things we’ve ever done in the United States for my foundation. It’s both a benefit and kind of [an introduction] to what the foundation is, what we’ve been doing over the past number of years and what some of our work in the future is going to be. And we’re also going to take time on this particular night to pay tribute to Jack Lemmon who was my mentor and guide in many of these kinds of things.
Your foundation gives scholarships to young people pursuing careers in the performing arts. Do you think arts funding – as a political issue – gets overlooked? About two years ago, I gave the Nancy Hanks lecture [in D.C.] to make the argument for why the National Endowment for the Arts should get the funding that it gets. I think it’s a very low figure. It’s in fact one of the lowest figures that it’s had in its history. The value that is never really emphasized … is the value economically of arts centers in any city in the United States, and what the arts gives back to its community. In fact, any place you have an arts venue, whether it be a comedy club or jazz club or an opera house… it drives the economy in those neighborhoods. That happens time and time again. So I don’t look at it as a political issue, I actually look at is as an economic issue.
Which presidents, do you think, have done the most for the arts? Richard Nixon. That may be a surprising name for you to hear. But he actually funded the National Endowment for the Arts more than any president had up until that time.
Is there more CLICK HERE