The Broadway adaptation of John Grisham's crime thriller A Time To Kill is closing less than a month after it officially opened. The author's popular book about a young white lawyer defending an African-American man accused of murder inspired a Hollywood movie starring Matthew McConaughey in 1996, and it was turned into a play for the Great White Way this year (13), featuring Tom Skerritt and Ashley Williams.
The show has been struggling with poor ticket sales since its official opening on 20 October (13), and was the lowest grossing play on Broadway last week (begs28Oct13).
The production opened to mixed reviews and failed to garner audiences that shows like Betrayal with married couple Rachel Weisz and Daniel Craig and The Glass Menagerie with Zachary Quinto have found over the past few weeks.
A Time to Kill, which is the first of Grisham's legal-themed novels to be adapted for the stage, is slated to close on 17 November (13).
Actress Jessica Lange is planning to walk away from hit U.S. drama series American Horror Story next year (14), as she prepares to wind down her acting career. The Oscar-winning actress, who has played a meddling neighbour, witch and a nun on co-creator/producer Ryan Murphy's creepy show, reveals she is serious about retiring now she's 64, but there are a number of final projects she would like to complete before bowing out of the spotlight for good.
She tells the Los Angeles Times, "I am coming to the end of acting. I have a list: another stage production, maybe one or two more movies, one more season of American Horror Story... and then that is it for me. Because I think that's enough. I want to go out with a bang... or should I say, a scare?"
Lange credits the supernatural thriller with giving her a new lease of life onscreen, although it has taken a little adjustment to get used to the attention she has garnered from younger viewers: "It (American Horror Story) re-energised me; it re-energised my career. There's no shame in recognising that. It's exposed me to a whole new generation, which is a little strange. I'm not used to young people thinking I'm cool."
Lange already has plans for her last theatre project - she is hoping to make her Broadway return by reprising her West End role in classic drama Long Day's Journey Into Night.
Back in August (13), she told the Times, "About 12 years ago now, I did a production of what is probably my favourite play ever of all time, Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey Into Night, and I am planning on doing that sometime within the next year and a half back on Broadway."
Lange's portrayal of drug-addled mother Mary Tyrone in 2000 won her a nomination for the U.K.'s prestigious Olivier Awards.
She last appeared on Broadway in a 2005 revival of Tennessee Williams' The Glass Menagerie.
The 68th Annual Tony Awards will be broadcast live from Radio City Music Hall on June 8, 2014, according to Deadline.
Hopeful nominees must meet the April 24 eligibility deadline, which is a few day before nominations will be announced (April 29).
The 2013-14 lineup is expected to be chock full of Tony-worthy performances. Some of the shows include musicals The Bridges of Madison County, Rocky, and Alladin, and plays Betrayal (starring Daniel Craig), Romeo and Juliet (starring Orlando Bloom), The Glass Menagerie (starring Zachary Quinto), and All the Way (starring Bryan Cranston).
A host for the 2014 ceremony has not yet been announced, but it wouldn't come as a surprise if Neil Patrick Harris was tapped again to spearhead the event considering that the 2013 Emmys jokingly pegged him as having an "excessive hosting disorder."
The awards show will air live on CBS, where it has aired since 1978.
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So long, AMC and hello, Broadway. Bryan Cranston of Breaking Bad fame is taking his role as our 36th president in All the Way from Cambridge, Mass. to New York City, according to The New York Times. (We know you were all hoping it would be a musical.)
Receiving positive reviews for his performance as Lyndon B. Johnson, Cranston is expected to drive up ticket sales for the play written by Pulitzer Prize winner Robert Schenkkan (The Kentucky Cycle) when it hits Broadway late this year or early 2014. Assuming Cranston is vying for a Tony nomination for next year, he will be facing off against actors like Zachary Quinto in The Glass Menagerie, Denzel Washington in A Raisin in the Sun, Daniel Craig in Betrayal, Ian Mckellen and Patrick Stewart in No Man's Land and Waiting for Godot, and Ethan Hawke in Macbeth.
The three-hour historical drama chronicles LBJ's first year as president following the assassination of John F. Kennedy in 1963 and his election win the following year. All the Way is currently nearing the completion of its sold-out run at the American Repertory Theatre in Cambridge.
So far, Cranston is the only actor confirmed to appear in the Broadway play.
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Star Trek actor Zachary Quinto has won a round of glowing reviews for his Broadway debut in a revival of Tennessee Williams' classic play The Glass Menagerie. Quinto appears opposite Broadway veteran Cherry Jones in the production, which opened in New York this week (ends29Sep13), and he has won acclaim for his role as Jones' onstage son, Tom.
David Rooney of The Hollywood Reporter calls Quinto's Broadway debut a "knockout", writing, "A performance of towering complexity from Cherry Jones... (makes) this essential theater. No less impressive is Zachary Quinto's knockout Broadway debut as Williams' most nakedly autobiographical character, Tom."
The New York Daily News' theatre critic Joe Dziemianowicz gives the play five stars out of five, branding it a "must-see" and singles out Quinto for particular praise, adding, "No ifs, ands or buts - The Glass Menagerie should break your heart. The new Broadway revival starring Cherry Jones and Zachary Quinto cracks it wide open."
Elisabeth Vincentelli of the New York Post also praised Quinto and even compared the production to hugely popular TV show Breaking Bad, writing, "This revival of Tennessee Williams' The Glass Menagerie arrives on Broadway... with the excitement usually reserved for Breaking Bad... It's genius! You need it!"
Tony Award winner Jones is best known for her role as President Allison Taylor in hit TV series 24. Quinto also got a big break with a part in the third season of Kiefer Sutherland's drama show.
Zachary Quinto is considering turning his back on Hollywood to live out his theatre dreams, insisting he is happiest onstage. The actor made a name for himself in hit U.S. TV shows including 24, Heroes, and Six Feet Under before he was cast as Spock in J.J. Abrams' Star Trek reboot, but he has always longed to be a Broadway performer.
Quinto is now making his debut on the Great White Way in a revival of Tennessee Williams' classic play The Glass Menagerie and admits he would give up film if he could work solely onstage.
He tells the Associated Press, "It (Hollywood) was always a means to an end to me. I always felt like I wanted to be in L.A. so that I could come back here (to New York) and do theatre and now I'm making good on that promise to myself...
"I didn't want to come in, swoop in with my name above the title of the play like I was some Hollywood entity. I've been doing theatre since I was 10. Theatre's my jam. It's my life, ultimately. If I could make a living just doing theatre, I feel like I really might."
The 36 year old is determined to soak up every moment of living and working in the Big Apple: "I was walking to work today. I've been walking the past few days because it's so beautiful out, so I walk from downtown. And I was like, 'This is my life' - living in Manhattan, a dream I've always had, and I'm walking to my theatre on Broadway to do Tennessee Williams. It's not lost on me. I really am humbled by it often. I feel really grateful."
If you haven't read a word of Anton Chekhov you'll enjoy Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike. But you’ll find it so much funnier if you have.
Christopher Durang’s modern-day update of themes and situations from the Russian master’s oeuvre just won the Tony Award for Best Play, causing its run at the John Golden Theatre to be extended through August 28. Catching up with the play again following its Tony victory, it’s easy to see the reason why it took home the big prize. Or rather four reasons why: David Hyde Pierce, Kristine Nielsen, Sigourney Weaver, and Billy Magnussen as the titular quartet. Their commitment elevates what’s otherwise rather slight material — Durang’s transformation of Chekhov into a self-referential comedy of errors. Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike is really no different from the playwright’s Durang/Durang, his collection of six one-act parodies of classic plays like Tennessee Williams’ The Glass Menagerie, which Durang transformed into “For Whom the Southern Belle Tolls.”
In Bucks County, PA, fiftysomething siblings Vanya (Hyde Pierce) and Sonia (Nielsen) greet the morning much as they always do: in pajamas drinking coffee on their porch, awaiting the arrival of a cherished blue heron. They’ve never had to earn a living — their famous actress sister Masha (Weaver) sends them money in exchange for being able to flaunt her fabulous movie-star life to them on occasion — and Vanya spends his days writing experimental plays, while Sonia pines for Vanya. Don’t worry, she’s an adopted sibling. Much of the play takes place on that porch, capped with a gabled roof, dappled with warm sunlight, and enfolded by a cherry orchard (because it’s Chekhov).
Though Vania, Sonia, and Masha’s sibling dynamics are very Chekhovian, Durang chooses to go meta on us by revealing that their parents were literature professors and community theater enthusiasts who deliberately named them after Chekhov characters. Some of Durang’s dialogue is overly expository in setting up this concept, with Vanya saying to Sonia “Well, I guess that’s what happens when your parents are literature professors,” as if she’s only learning of their profession for the first time. It’s the kind of conceptual futzing that’s frustrating.
But Durang’s material gets a shot of adrenaline the moment über-thesp Masha appears, threatening to sell their house out from under them and flaunting her vapid boy toy Spike (Magnussen), a finalist for a role on Entourage 2. Weaver’s Masha is in full Norma Desmond mode, crippled by both inferiority and superiority complexes, while Magnussen plays Spike with go-for-broke physicality as if he were a horny puppy dog — he humps Masha repeatedly throughout the show and performs a ridiculous “reverse striptease,” in which he starts with his clothes off but gives a Chippendales-style performance as he gets dressed. Once the laughs subside you realize the four characters represent four different coping methods for dealing with life: nostalgia (Vanya), hermitage (Sonia), escapism (Masha), and ignorance (Spike).
Durang tends toward the absurd, as he did in The Marriage of Bette and Boo and Betty’s Summer Vacation. Masha is determined to put her siblings in their lowly place by forcing them to attend a party where she’s dressed as Disney’s version of Snow White, while Vanya is a dwarf and Sonia is the Evil Queen. They stay in these costumes for much of the play.
In the second act, Durang starts treating his characters like human beings more than archetypes. Sonia’s role as the Evil Queen turns out to be a huge hit at the party, overshadowing Masha, and her sincere attempt at connection afterward, a lengthy phone conversation with a potential suitor, is hopeful and heartbreaking, a gossamer transformation perfectly executed by Nielsen. Vanya’s emotional breakdown after Spike doesn’t “get” his play about a molecule is a show-stopping five-minute monologue about his love of the analog era before the much-younger Spike’s birth and his contempt for everything that’s come since. Hyde Pierce may not have conveyed emotional fragility this acute since Niles Crane.
Though it’s hard not to think that Durang is really besotted with his own cleverness — and hard not to be annoyed by that — Vanya and Sonya and Masha and Spike is proof that serious neuroses don’t need to be taken too seriously.
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"I'm a New Yorker now. My favourite city in the world. I just got the keys to my new place this week so I'm really, really thrilled." Actor Zachary Quinto has relocated to the Big Apple ahead of his Broadway debut in a revival of Tennessee Williams' classic play, The Glass Menagerie, this autumn (13).
Zachary Quinto is set to make his Broadway debut in a revival of Tennesse Williams' classic play The Glass Menagerie. As fans await the launch of the new Star Trek sequel, in which Quinto will reprise his young Mr. Spock character, he has announced he will be treading the boards on the Great White Way for the first time from 5 September (13).
The four-piece play, which will run for 17 weeks, will co-star Amanda Wingfield, Brian J. Smith and Celia Keenan-Bolger, and has already received rave reviews during a stint in Cambridge, Massachusetts earlier this year (13).
The Glass Menagerie last appeared on Broadway in 2005 and starred Jessica Lange and Christian Slater.
Determined to catch up with his sleep on the 11-hour journey, the movie star popped what he thought was an Ambien only to realise minutes later he had mixed up his 'A' with a 'V' - and instead of sleeping he spent the flight wide awake, with a painful erection.
Renner explains, "I had to get off the plane to go to work so I had to sleep on the plane... Somebody gave me some pills... so great.
"I took a little sleeping pill... and I realised nothing's happening but something else is happening, and I realised pretty quickly that that 'A' was a little 'V' on the pill.
"Not only did I not sleep on the entire flight, I was camping... There was no walking. If I had to go to the restroom, it was so embarrassing.
"I had Dennis Hopper, God rest his soul, laying next to me and his daughter was there playing with this little glass menagerie on the ledge... I'm like playing with her and I'm like, 'Hold on a second, man. I'm gonna go to jail, I'm gonna get arrested. This does not look good.'"
An adaptation of Tennessee Williams' play about restless young warehouse worker and would-be poet, Tom Wingfield, his fragile, reclusive sister, Laura, and his colorful but overbearing mother, Amanda, all living together in a shabby apartment in St. Louis during the Depression and struggling to dilute the grim realities of daily living by way of memories, fantasies, and grandiose dreams about the future.