Old Vic artistic director Kevin Spacey, who last year attracted headlines for criticising the BBC’s musicals reality TV casting competitions (See News, 31 Mar 2008), has been approached by the Beeb to head up a theatre-based casting show of his own.

In an interview with thelondonpaper, Spacey revealed that he’s in negotiations to host a reality TV show that would give aspirants the chance to act in a play production at the Old Vic. However, it’s not a done deal as Spacey has concerns about letting cameras into rehearsals. “Generally, they want to come into the rehearsal room and film ad nauseam, but the rehearsal room is sacred - actors need to try things and feel they can fail,” Spacey told the free sheet. “The notion that you can get actors of reputation to allow cameras in is very difficult.”

Nevertheless, Spacey is confident as “discussions are still ongoing, ideas are being thrown around. I think there are ways to be able to do it.”

Last year, Spacey was widely quoted in the press for complaining to the BBC about the Andrew Lloyd Webber-fronted Any Dream Will Do, which found Lee Mead to take the title role in the West End production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Spacey said: \"I felt that was essentially a 13-week promotion for a musical and I felt, where\'s our 13-week programme? When are they going to do one for a play?” It seems that he’s nearly got his answer.

UPDATED, Thu 25 Jun 2009: Kevin Spacey has since denied the veracity of this press report on Twitter. “For those asking, it is not true I am considering a contest reality TV show about the Old Vic,” he tweeted yesterday.