Kevin Spacey Fowler was born 1959 in South Orange, New Jersey. He was the youngest of three children born to Thomas and Kathleen Fowler. He has a sister, Julie Ann, and a brother Randy B. Fowler (a Rod Stewart
impersonator!). His mother was a personal secretary and his father a technical writer. The family moved around often due to Thomas' career but they eventually settled in southern California.
As a child Kevin was a bit of a troublemaker. He was shipped to the Northridge Military Academy after he set his sister's tree house on fire. Then he got thrown out a few months later for pinging a ate on the head with a tire. He attended Chatsworth High School, located in the San Fernando Valley. During his senior year he played Captain von Trapp in The Sound of Music
. He was Co-Valedictorian of his high school (1977). Val Kilmer
was one of his ates.
For a short time he attended Los Angeles Valley College. He left to join a drama program at Juilliard. After two years of training, in 1981, he quit Juilliard sans diploma and signed up with the New York Shakespeare Festival. His first professional stage appearance was as a messenger in the 1981 production of Henry VI
Spacey made his Broadway debut in Henrik Ibsen's Ghosts
. In 1986 he worked with his idol and future mentor, Jack Lemmon
Today Kevin Spacey is one of the most well known actors in Hollywood. His ability to portray numerous characters has earned him countless awards. Currently (2008), Kevin is living in London where he the artistic director of The Old Vic Theatre (since 2003) - the first American to hold the position. He previously co-hosted fundraisers for the Theatre (2002).
Kevin took the name 'Spacey' as his professional name from his mother - it was her maiden name.