Media Morsels 5.18.12

The Newsroom: Trailer #3

Want more Aaron Sorkin? Here's video of his commencement address to the 2012 class of his alma mater, Syracuse University.

Want even more Aaron Sorkin? Here you go: It is now confirmed that Sorkin will write the screenplay for a Steve Jobs biopic. Sorkin will adapt Walter Isaacson's book Steve Jobs for the screen. The Hollywood Reporter has details.

Casting News

Dan Stevens, who stars as Matthew Crawley on Downton Abbey, will be bringing his good looks and exceptional talent to Broadway this fall in The Heiress. Stevens joins the previously announced Jessica Chastain (The Help, Take Shelter) and David Strathairn (Good Night and Good Luck). The Heiress is set to bow on Broadway this October, though specific dates and a theatre have yet to be announced. Visit Playbill for more details. (Also: In January 2013, Downton Abbey will return to PBS for its third season!)

Theatre Award Season Update

  • The Tony poster has been revealed. (There it is, —›) What do you think?

    In other Tony news, last week, I shared that New York Times chief theatre critic Ben Brantley had made his predictions for this year's awards. This week, the folks at Did He Like It? offer a simple chart analyzing how he's done over the years.

  • The Outer Critics Circle Award winners were announced on Monday. (These awards honor both on and off-Broadway.) Winners will be feted at a ceremony on May 24. Death of a Salesman won for Best Revival of  Play; Christopher Gattelli won for his Newsies choreography; Ghost's lighting designer, Hugh Vanstone, was honored; and The Submission received the John Gassner Award, presented to an American play, preferably by a new playwright. Visit Playbill for the full list of winners.

  • Finn Wittrock (Death of a Salesman) and Susan Pourfar (Tribes) won the Clarence Derwent Award, which honors "the most promising male and female performances on the New York" stage. Past recipients include Nina Arianda, Michael Esper and Christopher Walken. has details.

  • and checked in with the winners of the 2012 New York Drama Critics Circle Awards.

  • On Sunday, audience favorites were announced in the Audience Choice Awards. Fans named Peter and the Starcatcher their favorite new play (excellent choice!) and chose its stars, Celia Keenan-Bolger and Christian Borle, for Favorite Actress in a Play and Favorite Funny Performance, respectively. Visit for: the full list of winners; fun photos of the honorees; red carpet video interviews; full photo coverage; after party silliness, with Susan Blackwell and Paul Wontorek interviewing winners, presenters and the host, Darren Criss; and here, check out the hilarious Susan Blackwell (Now. Here. This.) as she goes backstage at the awards: (And scroll down for Peter and the Starcatcher's Adam Chanler-Berat's behind the scenes video!)

2012-2013 TV Season

It's upfront week at the networks (check out photo coverage of some theatre vets at the presentation), which means the TV schedules have been decided and networks are showing the shows to advertisers. Here are some notable items from around the networks:
  • NBC (via Playbill)
    : Community, 30 Rock and Parks and Recreation have been picked up for shortened, final seasons; Parenthood and Up All Night have been renewed; Smash will be back mid-season (in the winter) for 16-18 episodes
    New shows: Go On (watch a clip here), starring Matthew Perry, Laura Benanti (Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown) and Julie White (The Understudy); The New Normal, starring Andrew Rannells (The Book of Mormon) and Ellen Barkin (The Normal Heart); Do No Harm, directed by Michael Mayer (American Idiot) and starring iHo alumni Steven Pasquale and Michael Esper; and Hannibal, starring Hugh Dancy (Venus in Fur)

  • Fox
    (via Playbill): Glee will move to Thursday nights at 9pm, and Sarah Jessica Parker and Kate Hudson will appear in the fourth season.
    New shows (via E! Online): The Mindy Project, Mindy Kaling's new show; check out a preview below:
  • ABC (via E! Online): A shock to no one but good news nonetheless, Modern Family has been renewed

  • CBS (via E! Online): The Good Wife and How I Met Your Mother will be back, but Patrick Wilson's A Gifted Man won't be
Starstuff on the Road and in a Book (and More!)

Great news: Peter and the Starcatcher will go out on tour! That's right, the magical stage production that tells the tale of how an orphan boy became Peter Pan and how a girl, Molly, helped him have faith, is coming to a town near you. The tour will kick off in Denver in August 2013. (What's with Denver? There's where The Book of Mormon begins its tour. Hmmm...) To stay up to date, check the show's website,

More great news: An annotated Starcatcher script will be published on June 5 (just in time for the Tonys!). As announced on Playbill, the 192-page book "includes the complete script with commentary and insight about the characters and scenes from the creative team." Design sketches, behind-the-scenes production photos and cast essays will also be included. (You can pre-order your copy from Amazon, like I did, now!)

Playbill recently caught up with Tony nominee Christian Borle, who's enjoying the success of both Smash and Starcatcher.

And now, some videos.

Check out what Tony nominee Celia Keenan-Bolger keeps in her dressing room:

Finally, star Adam Chanler-Berat brings us another episode of Boy's Life, his behind-the-scenes vlog of life at Starctcher. In this episode, he takes us through his experience at the Audience Choice Awards.

Coming and Going

Now that the 2011-2012 theatre season is more or less finished, we're learning of several shows we'll see next season, current shows that will continue to run and some shows we'll say goodbye to. Here's a rundown:
  • Coming: Bring it On: The Musical, based on the Kirsten Dunst movie, this has music by Tom Kitt (a genius), lyrics by Amanda Green, music and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda and a book by Jeff Whitty (Avenue Q). It will play a limited engagement at the St James Theatre beginning July 12. Opening night is August 1 and the show will continue through October 7. Tickets will go on sale May 21.

  • Coming: Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf, courtesy of Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre. Company members Tracy Letts and Amy Morton (who wrote and starred in, respectively, August: Osage County) will star as George and Martha. Pam MacKinnon (Clybourne Park) will direct. The play does not have a home, but previews are set to begin September 27, with opening night October 13, exactly 50 years to the date after the play's original Broadway opening. 

  • Coming (maybe): The Performers, a new play by David West Read (Dream of the Burning Boy). The play is aiming for a fall bow with Henry Winkler and Cheyenne Jackson among its cast members. The play centers around a porn star and a reporter. What could go wrong?

  • Staying Longer: The Best Man, the hilarious and timely revival of Gore Vidal's political satire. This is the second extension for the play, which will now run through September 9.

  • Staying Longer: Newsies, once a limited run, is now, to no one's surprise, an open-ended production. On May 21, group sales will be open through January 6, 2013, and single sales through November 18, 2012.

  • Staying Longer: A Streetcar Named Desire will extend its run. The limited engagement will now play through August 19.

  • Going: Priscilla Queen of the Desert, the campy musical about singing drag queens, will pack up the bus and conclude its Broadway run on June 24.

In Case You Missed It

A few reviews you may have missed in the last couple of weeks:

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