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Kevin Spacey thanks awards do for 'having the balls' to give him lifetime achievement gong despite sex assault charges
17 January 2023, 15:02 | Updated: 30 June 2023, 11:28
Kevin Spacey has thanked an Italian cinema museum for having "the balls" to let him pickup a lifetime achievement award at a glitzy ceremony in Turin.
The Oscar winning actor, who is facing a sexual assault trial in June, said he was "truly blessed and grateful and humbled" as he was given the gong and said his coworkers throughout his time in cinema were also being honoured by it.
Mr Spacey denies the allegations against him.
He told the Museum of Cinema in Turin: "My heart is very full tonight toward the National Museum of Cinema for having had the le palle to invite me tonight."
Le palle means "a pair" in English, a euphemism for testicles.
He then introduced a screening of American Beauty, in which he plays a man who becomes infatuated with his teenage daughter's friend.
Speaking at the event, dressed in a tuxedo, Mr Spacey said: "The first performance that I ever gave was in my junior high school drama class.
"It was a little five-minute scene that we had to create, with no words. But we could have music. I was 11 years old.
"And I decided to do a Western scene, so that I could play a cowboy. Well, a bank robber. The bad guy, naturally.
"I have been so honoured to have been part of the creative process with so many remarkable people. Filmmakers, artists and technicians I have had the chance to work with.
"Who would not consider tonight the perfect opportunity to say, 'Thank you!' You are not just honoring me. You are honouring all of them.
"I am truly blessed and grateful and humbled. And my heart is very full tonight toward the National Museum of Cinema for having had the le palle to invite me tonight."
His appearance caused controversy in Italy but the museum's president, Enzo Ghigo, said last year: "We are honoured that such a prestigious guest as Kevin Spacey chose Turin and our museum for this long-awaited return to an event with an audience."
Past winners of the lifetime achievement award at the Turin Film Festival include Monica Bellucci. Mr Spacey, 63, received his for "personal aesthetic and authorial contribution to the development of the art of drama".
Mr Spacey denied seven more charges of sex offences at Southwark Crown Court last week.
The allegations are claimed to have happened between 2001 and 2005.
In total, he faces 12 charges relating to four alleged victims, all men, between 2001 and 2013.
He has repeatedly denied accusations made against him.