Kevin Spacey (in Character) Stops Show to Scold Audience Member for Ringing Cell Phone

Kevin Spacey (in Character) Stops Show to Scold Audience Member for Ringing Cell Phone
From left: Kevin Spacey, on stage in London; Neil Patrick Harris, in Hedwig and the Angry Inch; and James McAvoy
Jeremy Whelehan/Donna Daniels Public Relations/AP; Bryan-Brown/Joan Marcus/Boneau/AP; Jim Spellman/WireImage

06/05/2014 03:45PM

Attention, theatergoers: Do not annoy Kevin Spacey when he's onstage – or prepare to incur his wrath.

The Oscar-winning actor, 54, scolded an audience member Wednesday during the opening night of his one-man show, Clarence Darrow, when a ringing cell phone blasted through London's Old Vic theater during a pivotal stage speech.

"If you don't answer that, I will!" Spacey pointedly said in character, reports the Independent newspaper, after the guilty party failed to silence the phone quickly. (The audience clearly appreciated the unscripted line, which was met with loud applause.)

The House of Cards star, who is wrapping up a 10-yeat stint as the Old Vic's artistic director, is not the only performer to call out an audience member for bad behavior.



In April, Neil Patrick Harris stayed in character yet made his annoyance apparent when a female audience member yelled out "I love you, Neil" while he was performing the title role in Broadway's Hedwig and the Angry Inch.

"Who's Neil? I'm not Neil," he first replied, before adding, "I'm doing something up here, motherf–––." (In the context of the show, this isn't as confrontational as it might seem.)

Also adhering to the rules of theater attendance? James McAvoy, who halted a performance of Macbeth in London's West End last year. The actor shouted at an audience member who was filming the show without permission, reports the Telegraph.

But leave it to Broadway diva Patti LuPone to top them all.



In 2009, she dramatically stopped a Broadway performance of Gypsy for more than two minutes to berate someone in the audience for snapping photos. She demanded the offender be removed from the premises, then thanked the rest of the audience for abiding by the rules before transforming back into character of stage mother supreme, Mama Rose.

Later that year, LuPone made a similar move in Vegas when she caught someone snapping photos of her while performing "Don't Cry for Me, Argentina" from Evita – and later defended her actions to The New York Times.

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