Kevin Spacey Wows Houston

We're in love! Kevin Spacey wows black-tie crowd at spectacular Best Buddies bash

We're in love! Kevin Spacey wows black-tie crowd at Best Buddies bash

News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Elizabeth Petersen, Kevin Spacey, Joyce Echols
Elizabeth Petersen, Kevin Spacey, Joyce Echols. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Carl Lewis, Becca Cason Thrash, Anthony Kennedy Shriver
Carl Lewis, Becca Cason Thrash, Anthony Kennedy Shriver. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, John Thrash, Eric Pulaski
John Thrash, Eric Pulaski. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Duyen Nguyen, Marc Nguyen
Duyen Nguyen, Marc Nguyen. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Annie Amante, Cliffe Reckling, Kathi Koll
Annie Amante, Cliffe Reckling, Kathi Koll. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
Nathan Brunell, Kevin Spacey, Charles Calhoun, Carl Lewis, Michael Iovine
Celebrities and Best Buddies Ambassadors share a good time. From left,  Nathan Brunell, Kevin Spacey, Charles Calhoun, Carl Lewis, Michael Iovine. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Fay Zakhem, Salim Zakhem,
The lavish pool room where The Events Co. and Richard Flowers created a swank dining arena. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Sue Smith, Lester Smith
Sue Smith, Lester Smith. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
NEws, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Jim Ware, Diane Lokey Farb
Jim Ware, Diane Lokey Farb. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Kevin Spacey, Dancie Ware
Kevin Spacey, Dancie Ware. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Becca Cason Thrash, Kevin Spacey, Anthony Kennedy Shriver
Becca Cason Thrash, Kevin Spacey, Anthony Kennedy Shriver. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Fay Zakhem, Salim Zakhem,
Fay Zakhem, Salim Zakhem. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Sahai Athari, Monsour Taghdisi
Sahai Athari, Monsour Taghdisi. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Patrice Levantino, Marcus & Nancy Hiles
Patrice Levantino, Marcus Hiles, Nancy Hiles. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Cenk Ozdogen, Todd Ficus
Dr. Cenk Ozdogen, Todd Fiscus. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Emily Pavell, Fady Armanious
Emily Pavell, Fady Armanious. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Dr. Devinder Bhatia, Gina Bhatia
Dr. Devinder Bhatia, Gina Bhatia. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Vestita Kuntz, Carl Lewis, Hallie Daugherty
Vestita Kuntz, Carl Lewis, Hallie Daugherty. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Mark Wylie, Nicole Maddox, Scott Tracy
Mark Wylie, Nicole Maddox, Scott Tracy. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Elizabeth Petersen, Kevin Spacey, Joyce Echols
Elizabeth Petersen, Kevin Spacey, Joyce Echols. © Michelle Watson/CatchLightGroup.com
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Elizabeth Petersen, Kevin Spacey, Joyce Echols
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Carl Lewis, Becca Cason Thrash, Anthony Kennedy Shriver
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, John Thrash, Eric Pulaski
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Duyen Nguyen, Marc Nguyen
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Annie Amante, Cliffe Reckling, Kathi Koll
Nathan Brunell, Kevin Spacey, Charles Calhoun, Carl Lewis, Michael Iovine
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Fay Zakhem, Salim Zakhem,
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Sue Smith, Lester Smith
NEws, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Jim Ware, Diane Lokey Farb
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Kevin Spacey, Dancie Ware
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Becca Cason Thrash, Kevin Spacey, Anthony Kennedy Shriver
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Fay Zakhem, Salim Zakhem,
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Sahai Athari, Monsour Taghdisi
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Patrice Levantino, Marcus & Nancy Hiles
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Cenk Ozdogen, Todd Ficus
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Emily Pavell, Fady Armanious
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Dr. Devinder Bhatia, Gina Bhatia
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Vestita Kuntz, Carl Lewis, Hallie Daugherty
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Mark Wylie, Nicole Maddox, Scott Tracy
News, Shelby, Best Buddies, Kevin Spacey, Nov. 2015, Elizabeth Petersen, Kevin Spacey, Joyce Echols

Delivering an F-bomb here and there along with a handful of remarkable impersonations and intriguing personal insights, Best Buddies ambassador Kevin Spacey proved on Saturday night to be as entertaining in person as on the big (or little) screen. The stage was the glam home of John and Becca Cason Thrash where he was celebrity guest at a Best Buddies black-tie dinner.

The Academy Award winner dished with Becca and Best Buddies founder Anthony Kennedy Shriver on a number of topics, the conversation laced with Spacey's impersonations of President Bill Clinton, Sen. Ted Kennedy, Jack Lemmon and his Francis Underwood character.

As he spoke about the importance of Best Buddies, he stepped to the edge of the pool, around which the dinner was held, and quipped, "Oh baby, I'm going in and someone's going to fucking pay for it."

As the crowd erupted in laughter, Becca, the ardent fundraiser, chimed in, "Anyone give $100,000 to see it?"

"The notion of giving back"

The evening was not without its meaningful tone. Spacey credited actor Jack Lemmon, whom he met at age 13, with introducing the notion of giving back and the elevator analogy. "If you've been fortunate enough to do well in the business that you wanted to do well in," Spacey said, "then it is your obligation to spend a good portion of your time, sending the elevator back down.

"In a way, we all can send the elevator back down because it doesn't matter what floor you are on. In life there are always people just below waiting for the opportunity to be invited up and so it's our jobs to fill that elevator with as many people as we can."

Spacey has been a Best Buddies ambassador for more than 20 years and has traveled extensively with the organization.

On acting

"I get this incredible opportunity to interpret what is written," Spacey said. "I've had unbelievable characters that writers have written and I've been able to work with some pretty remarkable directors." 

Noting that he has had a long career on the stage and in film, he added, "The great thing is I feel like I'm just getting started."

Becca asked what among his many "diabolical" characters was the most challenging.

"The building and creation of the role that I'm currently doing, of Frances Underwood, (House of Cards) has been an incredible journey . . . It's an incredible part and for me to be able to go to work every day and have Robin Wright at my side is pretty, excuse my language, fucking awesome."

The party scene

As is the norm at parties in the Cason Thrash home, the pool room was grandly decorated by Richard Flowers of The Events Co. Three long tables peppered with bouquets of salmon-hued roses and hundreds of candles in clear candelabra and votives lined the table. The evening began with photo opps with the amazingly patient star and cocktails that included Moet & Chandon champagne and Belvedere Vodka.

Dinner was a multi-course feast provided by B&B Butchers and Restaurant, SaltAir, Grotto and Brasserie 19.

The Cason Thrash dining room was laden with tempting silent auction items which helped bring the night's tally to $600,000. Thanks in part to high bidders such as Dylan and Jordan Seth who picked up the Zihuatanejo trip in the live auction.

The glamorous crowd included Samantha Boles, Rhonda McDonald, Sue and Lester Smith, Dancie and Jim Ware, Carl Lewis, Joyce Echols and Steve Wyatt, Elizabeth Petersen, Duyen and Marc Nguyen, Fay and Salim Zakhem, Diane Lokey Farb and Nancy and Marcus Hiles.