House of Cards star Kevin Spacey to give MacTaggart Memorial Lecture at Edinburgh festival

 

Hollywood star Kevin Spacey has been chosen to give an annual keynote speech to TV executives - about how his latest hit show bypassed television channels.

The Oscar-winning star will deliver the James MacTaggart Memorial Lecture in late August, which sets the tone at the Guardian Edinburgh International Television Festival

Spacey was the star and executive producer of drama series House of Cards which which was given its premiere on internet streaming service Netflix, sidestepping traditional networks.

He said he was honoured to speak and added: "Clearly this has been an exciting period for me personally but also I believe this is a time of huge opportunity, innovation and creativity for all of us who live to tell stories and engage audiences."

Elaine Bedell, the executive chair of the festival, said: "Kevin Spacey has been at the centre of cultural life both here in the UK and in the States for many years - and now with House of Cards, he has shown that he is also at the forefront of new ways of delivering television content to audiences."

Old Vic artistic director Spacey's firm Trigger Street Productions co-produced House Of Cards, which was based on the novel by Michael Dobbs and a previous BBC series.

Previous MacTaggart speakers have included Mark Thompson, Rupert Murdoch, Jeremy Paxman and Dennis Potter. The festival runs from August 22 to 24.

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