Media Morsels 4.30.10
- American Idiot Media Round-Up
The Idiots opened on Broadway last week and this week they went on a publicity blitz.
- They began by kicking off Broadway week at Regis and Kelly; Michael Esper, John Gallagher, Jr., and Stark Sands stopped by to play “Wake Me Up When September Ends.” Thankfully, my DVR worked just as it should have and captured the magic on tape. Or on the digital hard drive...or whatever! In case you missed it, check out the photos and video, now available online.
- Rebecca Naomi Jones was featured on Playbill.com’s Cue & A, which asks theatre folks to fill out a questionnaire with personal tidbits, like the fact that, like me, her favorite board game is LIFE.
- The handsome Michael Esper spoke to the NY Post about opening the show and the physical demands of Steven Hoggett’s convulsive choreography.
- On Tuesday, members of the cast were on hand to officially unveil the American Idiot window display at Bloomingdale’s. Following the window unveiling, the cast came upstairs to meet with fans and sign autographs. Yours truly was there for all the fun. I got a chance to chat (very briefly) with all seven cast members at the signing: Tony Vincent (St. Jimmy), Mary Faber (Heather), Michael Esper (Will), John Gallagher, Jr., (Johnny), Rebecca Naomi Jones (Whatsername), Stark Sands (Tunny) and Christina Sajous (The Extraordinary Girl.) The signed poster’s already hanging in my hall. Check out photos from the event on Broadwayworld.com.
- Broadway.com caught up with Tony Vincent, who tears it up every night as St. Jimmy. He talks about his experience with other rock shows (he’s been in Rent, Jesus Christ Superstar and We Will Rock You) and renaming the St. James!
- Several Idiots will be performing their own tunes on May 10 at a benefit for the Mary McGarry Children’s Foundation. Tickets for the Monday night event are $25 in advance, $30 at the door, if available, and 100% of the proceeds will go to the foundation which supports children’s education in Central Africa.
- The talented band of misfits inhabiting the St James finished the week by stopping by the famed Ed Sullivan theatre to perform “Holiday” on the Late Show with David Letterman. Their raucous rendition of the song led to cheers from both the audience and Dave! Re-watch their energetic performance on Broadway.com.
- Jonah Hex Trailer
In related American Idiot news, the trailer for the summer movie Jonah Hex is now online at Yahoo. This action-western thriller, based on a DC comic, isn’t my kind of movie but John Gallagher, Jr. is in it – and not just a blink-and-you-miss-him role – he’s in the trailer on horseback and in full-on Wild West garb. This marks Johnny’s “biggest” on-screen role to date. (He can also be seen in the sweet Pieces of April and Woody Allen’s Whatever Works, (and The West Wing!) among others.) Josh Brolin, Michael Shannon, John Malkovich and adolescent boys’ favorite Megan Fox are all also along for the ride. I still don’t think I’ll see this in the theatre – Inception will probably be the one movie I see in the theatre this summer – but it’s already been added to my queue.
- Award Show Season Update
- The Outer Critics Circle award nominees were announced this week. Leading the pack was the new, original musical Memphis, with seven nominations. The OCC awards honor the best in Broadway and off-Broadway, and the OCC itself consists of a group of writers covering New York theatre for “out of town newspapers, national publications and other media beyond Broadway.” The awards will be presented on May 17. American Idiot received two nominations, one for best new Broadway musical and one for Kevin Adams for best lighting design. (He’ll be competing against himself in that category – not uncommon for the expert designer – for his work on The Scottsboro Boys.) Some notable omissions:
- They got it wrong in the best actor in a musical category. They nominated Nathan Lane because he’s Nathan Lane and meanwhile left out Sahr Ngaujah (Fela!) and John Gallagher, Jr., (American Idiot) who both give extraordinary performances.
- Also left out was Brian d’Arcy James in the best actor in a play category, who was wonderful in Time Stands Still.
- Moreover, the ladies in American Idiot, particularly Rebecca Naomi Jones, didn’t get any love, while Katie Finneran (Promises, Promises) and Cass Morgan (Memphis), both of whom were my least favorite parts of their respective shows, got nods.
The OCC did get it right in some categories:
- Next Fall and Time Stands Still, best new Broadway play;
- American Idiot, Fela! and Memphis, best new Broadway musical;
- Clybourne Park, best new off-Broadway play;
- Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson, best new off-Broadway musical;
- Finian’s Rainbow, best musical revival;
- Kate Baldwin (Finian’s Rainbow) and Montego Glover (Memphis) best actress in a musical;
- Alicia Silverstone (Time Stands Still), best featured actress in a play;
- Christopher Fitzgerald (Finian’s Rainbow), Levi Kreis (Million Dollar Quartet) and Bobby Steggert (Ragtime), best featured actor in a musical;
- Anna Deveare Smith (Let Me Down Easy), best solo performance;
- Geoffrey Nauffts (Next Fall) and Bruce Norris (Clybourne Park), John Gassner Award for best American play, preferably by a new playwright
Visit Playbill.com for the full list of nominees.
- In other award news, the 2010 Tony poster has been revealed, and is pictured, at right. What do you think of the black-and-white, A Chorus Line-esque artwork? Word also came this week that the Tony website will stream live coverage of the backstage press room at the Tony awards. “Tune in” at tonyawards.com.
- The Tony nominating committee met for the final time this season to discuss eligibility of shows, performers and designers. As expected, American Idiot is not eligible for Best Score because less than 50% of the score was written for the Broadway production. The same is true for Fela!, the score of which (or at least more than 50% of the score) comes from material not written for the Broadway production. Another (expected) ruling is that John Gallagher, Jr., will be eligible in the Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical category. Read the full report of committee decisions on Playbill.com And remember, Tony nominations will be announced (by Lea Michele and Jeff Daniels) on Tuesday, May 4. Check back here for my reaction to the nominations.
- Theatre award season is in full swing, but it was just announced that the Golden Globes (yep, the awards held in January honoring TV and film) will be hosted, again, by funnyman Ricky Gervais. Cheers to that!
- No More Carnage
The Tony winning Yasmina Reza play, God of Carnage, will conclude its Broadway run on June 27. This new play, which was expertly directed by the incomparable Matthew Warchus, began in February 2009, so this is a fairly healthy run for a new play. The biting satire is 90-minutes of verbal harpoons and definitely worth seeing if you haven’t already.
- You Stay Classy, Anchorman!
Rumors sparked on empireonline.com about the possibility of an Anchorman sequel. Original Anchorman director Adam McKay says it’s a definite possibility – they’re just waiting for the go-ahead from a wary studio. That’s right, the cast is on board and many of the actors, whose fame and asking price grew since Ron Burgundy first graced the screen, have agreed to cut their fees for the sake of getting the movie made. That’s all the update for now – thanks for stopping by. But mostly, stay classy!
- Memphis Lives in Celluloid
The creators of the hit new, original musical Memphis are in talks to adapt their show for the big screen. Writer Joe DiPietro (also of I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change fame) says the production team is currently consider three serious offers. An official announcement is expected in the next couple of months.
- Bloody, Bloody Record
Check out these photos from Broadway.com of the cast of Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson recording the original off-Broadway album. A release date has still not been announced - be sure to check back here for updates.
- Got Expensive Taste? Here’s What You’re Paying For
Veering off from the usual fare of Reviewing the Drama, this week I want to share with you this article from the NY Times. In “Why Does this Pair of Pants Cost $550?” reporter Eric Wilson finds out what it costs to make premium, designer clothes and why a plain pair of chinos sells for upwards of $500. What really got me riled up was the mark up, particularly from the stores (like Barney’s.) What do you think? Other than, say, a little black dress/classic black suit that you can wear forever and ever, is any item of clothing worth that much money? Share your thoughts in the comments section.
- Anything Goes Sailing Back to Broadway?
The “de-lovely” Cole Porter musical Anything Goes may be headed back to Broadway as part of Roundabout’s 2010-2011 season. And that’s not even the good news. The good news is that Sutton Foster is rumored to be on the short list to play Reno Sweeney! I’m definitely on board with this idea. Anything Goes is one of my favorite traditional book musicals and Foster is such an amazing talent – and girlfriend can dance. The thought of her tapping away during the title song and leading the ship’s revival during “Blow, Gabriel, Blow” would make Cole Porter and all the Wiffenpoofs happy. Now we just need to find some great, funny, charming and talented male lead to play Billy (and an hilarious guy to play Moonface.) Because I love him, and because I just saw him and Sutton together in Anyone Can Whistle, I’m thinking maybe Raul Esparza would make a good Billy. (But, Esparza may be busy with an out of town tryout of Leap of Faith.) Some of the other possibly Billys who come to mind are all former co-stars of the leading lady, including Brian d’Arcy James (who’s heading back to Next to Normal this May) and Gavin Creel (who’s across the pond with Hair.) You know, if they could time it to coincide with Glee’s hiatus, Matthew Morrison could make a thoroughly modern Billy. Hmm… As Moonface, public enemy number 13, I’m thinking maybe Chris Fitzgerald, who was great comic relief in Finian’s Rainbow. And speaking of Finian’s Rainbow, the lovely Kate Baldwin would make a perfect Hope Harcourt. Keep checking the community board on the lido deck for more information!
- The Rapture Comes to Broadway
The final entry into the 2009-2010 Broadway season, Everyday Rapture, opened on Thursday, just in time to make it eligible for Tony consideration. And some prognosticators are predicting nominations for the show and it’s co-creator and star, Sherie Rene Scott. I haven’t seen the Broadway version, but a friend and I saw it when it premiered off-Broadway at Second Stage theatre last spring and loved every minute of it! NY Times theatre critic Ben Brantley raved about this Broadway incarnation and, if the previous version was just a starting point, the rave is richly deserved. This semi-autobiographical cabaret-ish show starring Ms. Scott (whose credits include some little Disney shows, like The Little Mermaid, as well as Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and the cult favorite The Last 5 Years – a simply beautiful two person chamber musical by Jason Robert Brown) is currently playing a limited run through July 11. If Thespis is smiling on us, it’ll extend at least once. If you love musicals and know what Ms. Scott means when she talks about “living inside a song,” get thee to the theatre!