The Avengers star is back on the New York stage tackling the role of Maggie in a new production of Tennessee Williams' classic play.
The role was made famous by Dame Elizabeth Taylor in the 1958 movie adaptation, which presented her as a seductress in a satin slip, but Johansson was eager to remove the sexual elements for her own stage version.
She even avoided seeing Taylor's onscreen portrayal of Maggie as she is convinced watching the movie would be a "terrible idea," adding, "Not saying anything about the film, it's just a different version of the story."
Johansson tells the Associated Press, "I think her sexuality is often overplayed and over-appreciated. It's such an unimportant part of this story. I mean, it comes with the circumstance, of course, and the settling and the words - that's already there. There's no need to drape yourself all over the stage and roll around in a satin sheet...
"It's really a beautiful play, really a perfect play, I think. If the play fails, it's our fault."
The show officially opens at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in Manhattan next month (Jan13).
Johansson previously won a coveted Tony Award in 2010 for her Broadway debut in a production of Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge.
Scarlett Johansson will pick up a guaranteed $40,000 (£25,000)-per-week for her upcoming Broadway stint in Cat On A Hot Tin Roof, according to leaked business papers sent to investors.
That's $38,000 (£23,750) more than the base weekly pay for Broadway actors, according to Bloomberg News.
The Tennessee Williams revival begins previews on 18 December (12) and Johansson will play the role of Maggie in the production. The late Elizabeth Taylor took on the part in the film version of the tense drama.
According to the business papers, Johansson will also collect 7.5 per cent of ticket sales above $530,000 (£331,250).
Johansson won a Tony Award for her 2010 Broadway debut in a revival of Arthur Miller's A View from the Bridge.
Beloved late Golden Girls stars Rue Mcclanahan and Bea Arthur are to be immortalised in ice-cream thanks to a new venture in New York. Owners of the Big Gay Ice Cream Shop are opening a parlour in the West Village, and a Rue McClanahan ice-cream sandwich will be on the menu. Arthur already has a vanilla ice cream with dulce de leche and crushed vanilla wafers named after her and the store's outlets.
The Hollywood star bounced back from her summer (12) divorce from Tom Cruise with a starring role on the New York stage, and she toasted her latest career move at a star-studded afterparty at Gotham Hall, where fellow guests included actress Lily Rabe and Broadway regular Nathan Lane.
However, Holmes struggled to win over critics with her portrayal of Lorna in the play - many reviews slated playwright Theresa Rebeck's story, which also stars Norbert Leo Butz and Judy Greer, while Holmes herself received a mixed reception from the press.
The Hollywood Reporter praises the actress for bringing "a lovely naturalness" to the part, while the Associated Press' reviewer suggests the former Dawson's Creek star "relies too much on a whiny teenage angst and a guilelessness that worked on TV but lacks nuance onstage", and a writer for the New York Daily News laments, "Unfortunately, Holmes' efforts add up to zilch. The stillborn comedy she's in is so stupefyingly unfocused that it plays like a draft, not a finished work."
Holmes made her Broadway debut in 2008 when she starred in a revival of Arthur Miller drama All My Sons.
Ian Lithgow leads the cast of new family drama The Outgoing Tide at New York City's 59E59 Theater and the Harvard University graduate reveals his dad helped him prepare for the part.
He tells the New York Post, "Back aways my father did theatre all the time, and for me it was playtime. I soaked it all in and hung out backstage with the crew, playing cards and (word board game) Scrabble.
"My father and I ran lines together. I held the book for him."
But it's unlikely his proud father will get a chance to catch his son in action - he is currently onstage in London in a production of Sir Arthur Wing Pinero's The Magistrate, which runs until January (13).
Ian adds, "Unfortunately, he's in England so he hasn't seen the play."
Forget that the latest adaptation of Leo Tolstoy's sweeping romance novel comes from the man who brought us the slick-but-stuffy Pride and Prejudice and Atonement. Every frame of director Joe Wright's Anna Karenina is a wonder to behold overflowing with visual spectacle and roaring performances. Keira Knightley Jude Law Aaron Taylor-Johnson and the rest of the cast fit perfectly in the high drama epic but it's really Wright's playground. Following Hanna an artful spin on the action movie Wright returns to the period drama but injects it with dazzling daring choices. A book like Anna Karenina could once fit in reality but its larger-than-life legacy precedes it. Wright acknowledges that from frame one approaching the film like a grand ballet or opera where grand gestures broad emotions and overt theatrics are commonplace. That vision clicks transforming Anna Karenina into an exhilarating moviegoing experience.
The storyline of Anna Karenina isn't far off from a daytime soap: It's 1874 and Anna (Knightley) is floating through existence as the wife of influential government player Karenin (Law). But when her brother Oblonsky (Matthew Macfadyen) summons her to Moscow to save his marriage Anna's entire world is shaken up. She meets Vronsky (Taylor-Johnson) a cavalry hunk who finds himself smitten with the taken lady. She's in the same boat: The two strike up a flirtatious relationship that evolves into one of sexual passion. A scandalous affair would incite trouble in the preset day but in the 19th century it's the ultimate crime. Quickly Anna's life comes crumbling down.
The intertwining melodrama of Anna Karenina earned the novel its classic status but Wright uses the material as a launching pad for imagination rather than a tome to translate to screen. Many of the scenes are staged in a theater creating an instant awareness of the production. Sets shift and are reconstructed into new rooms; actors costume change in the span of single shots; action sequences like a thrilling horse race are conducted on stage with special effects you might see on Broadway. Wright works this sort of stylization in the other direction too; a character could walk an empty stage open a door and suddenly be on a snow-covered hill. Anna Karenina isn't the first film to use the effect but in Wright's hands it's exhilarating.
The movie is Wright's third collaboration with Knightley and easily their most successful. Knightley never struggles to stay on the same page as the heightened material whether she's nailing a dance sequence or breaking down in a flood of tears. Casting an ensemble around Knightley is no easy task but Taylor-Johnson gives his best work yet as the debonair love interest and Macfadyen steals the show with moments of physical comedy.
We have expectations of the texture and structure of period romances. Anna Karenina defies them. Masterpiece Theater it is not.
"I was only angry when they were really droopy. For King Arthur, for a poster, they gave me these really strange droopy t**s. If you're going to make me fantasy breasts, at least make perky breasts." British actress Keira Knightley was annoyed when movie bosses enhanced her assets for 2004 movie King Arthur.
The former Dawson's Creek star debuted the production, by Smash creator Theresa Rebeck, in New York on Monday night (05Nov12), but she admits the rehearsal period was far from easy.
Holmes reveals she suffered sleepless nights as she was plagued with anxiety about performing for the crowds at the city's Music Box Theatre.
She tells the New York Times, "I have a hard time sleeping because I think about how serious this all is. I think about the cost of tickets. I think to myself, 'You better do a good job. People are paying a lot of money.' You want to know your stuff."
Holmes made her Broadway debut in 2008 in a revival of Arthur Miller's All My Sons.
Robert Zemeckis is a blockbuster director at heart. Action has never been an issue for the man behind Back to the Future. When he puts aside the high concept adventures for emotional human stories — think Forrest Gump or Cast Away — he still goes big. His latest Flight continues the trend revolving the story of one man's fight with alcoholism around a terrifying plane crash. Zemeckis expertly crafts his roaring centerpiece and while he finds an agile performer in Denzel Washington the hour-and-a-half of Flight after the shocking moment can't sustain the power. The "big" works. The intimate drowns.
Washington stars as Whip Whitaker a reckless airline pilot who balances his days flying jumbo jets with picking up women snorting lines of cocaine and drinking himself to sleep. Although drunk for the flight that will change his life forever that's not the reason the plane goes down — in fact it may be the reason he thinks up his savvy landing solution in the first place. Writer John Gatins follows Whitaker into the aftermath madness: an investigation of what really happened during the flight Whitaker's battle to cap his addictions and budding relationships that if nurtured could save his life.
Zemeckis tops his own plane crash in Cast Away with the heart-pounding tailspin sequence (if you've ever been scared of flying before Flight will push into phobia territory). In the few scenes after the literal destruction Washington is able to convey an equal amount of power in the moments of mental destruction. Whitaker is obviously crushed by the events the bottle silently calling for him in every down moment. Flight strives for that level of introspection throughout eventually pairing Washington with equally distraught junkie Nicole (Kelly Reilly). Their relationship is barely fleshed out with the script time and time again resorting to obvious over-the-top depictions of substance abuse (a la Nic Cage's Leaving Las Vegas) and the bickering that follows. Washington's Whitaker hits is lowest point early sitting there until the climax of the film.
Sharing screentime with the intimate tale is the surprisingly comical attempt by the pilot's airline union buddy (Bruce Greenwood) and the company lawyer (Don Cheadle) to get Whitaker into shape. Prepping him for inquisitions looking into evidence from the wreckage and calling upon Whitaker's dealer Harling (John Goodman) to jump start their "hero" when the time is right the two men do everything they can to keep any blame being placed upon Whitaker by the National Transportation Safety Board investigators. The thread doesn't feel relevant to Whitaker's plight and in turn feels like unnecessary baggage that pads the runtime.
Everything in Fight shoots for the skies — and on purpose. The music is constantly swelling the photography glossy and unnatural and rarely do we breach Washington's wild exterior for a sense of what Whitaker's really grappling with. For Zemeckis Flight is still a spectacle film with Washington's ability to emote as the magical special effect. Instead of using it sparingly he once again goes big. Too big.
British TV shows, including the Ab Fab 20th anniversary specials, scored a total of seven nods when the shortlist was announced on Monday (08Oct12).
Harry Potter star Jason Isaacs will battle for the Best Performance by an Actor trophy for his role in detective drama series Case Histories - he'll be up against Argentina's Dario Grandinetti from Television por la Inclusion, Norway's Stein Winge (Norwegian Cozy), Singapore's Arthur Acuna (The Kitchen Musical) and China's Zhu Yawen (Flying Eagle).
Actress Joanna Vanderham will represent the U.K. in the Best Performance by an Actress category for her turn in The Runaway, opposite Denmark's Sidse Babett Knudsen (Government), China's Rina Sa (Zhong Guo Di) and Argentina's Cristina Banegas (Television por la Inclusion).
Meanwhile, controversial BBC film Terry Pratchett: Choosing to Die, which chronicled the author's Alzheimer's Disease battle and his bid to end his life, is in the running for Best Documentary, up against South Korea's Across Land, Across Sea, Argentina's Hitler's Escape and Germany's Wettlauf Zum Sudpol (Race to the South Pole).
The Best Drama Series honour will be a fight between France's Braquo, Hong Kong's ICAC Investigators 2011, Singapore's The Kitchen Musical, Australia's The Slap and Argentina's The Social Leader.
Competing for the Best Comedy Series prize with Absolutely Fabulous will be Brazil's The Invisible Woman, Britain's Spy and Belgium's What If?
The winners will be unveiled at the annual prizegiving in New York on 19 November (12).