Kevin Spacey halted his play on June 6 after an audience member's phone rang.

The House of Cards star never broke character during the opening night of Clarence Darrow at London's Old Vic theatre, but managed to reprimand the unnamed man.

During a scene in the one-man show in which his character, 18th century pioneering US lawyer Clarence Darrow is on trial and defending himself, the actor was addressing the audience with a plea for his innocence when the device started ringing.

The music got louder and louder before Kevin snapped, "If you don't answer that, I will!"

The Oscar-winning actor — whose appearance in the play marks the end of his 10 years as creative director at the theatre — received a round of applause for the way he handled the interruption, and audience members later praised his actions on Twitter.

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One fan wrote: "Good to know if you're an idiot & let your phone ring during a show, the magnificent Kevin Spacey will call you out on it."

The 54-year-old actor has played the lawyer twice before, in the TV movie, Darrow, and the stage production, Inherit the Wind, admitting he was thrilled to end his time at the Old Vic with the play.

"Clarence Darrow was a unique and courageous man. Several of my favourite actors have played [him]…Henry Fonda, Orson Welles and Spencer Tracy," Kevin has previously said.

"Wanting to get up on my beloved Old Vic stage in our 10th anniversary season was also important to me. And taking on a play that I feel very close to seems right."

He added, "Throw in that I've never done a one-man play, or performed in the round before, and this production offered me two firsts. Plus, you know I love a challenge."

The show runs until June 15.