Media Morsels 2.15.13

Shakespeare in the Park

We may still be in the cold, snowy days of winter, but we can look forward to a great summer season of Shakespeare in the Park. This week, the Public Theater announced the program for the venerable summer tradition. May 28-June 30 will bring a Daniel Sullivan-directed production of The Comedy of Errors, starring Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family) and Hamish Linklater (Seminar, The School for Lies). Later in the summer (July 23-August 18), we'll get to see a new musical adaptation of Love's Labour's Lost, penned by the Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson team: Michael Friedman is writing the score and Alex Timbers (Peter and the Starcatcher) is writing the book and will direct the production. In a statement, Public Theater Artistic Director Oskar Eustis said, "This summer will be a joyous and light-hearted celebration of Shakespeare's comic side, from the wild slapstick of The Comedy of Errors to the hip beauty of Alex Timbers and Michael Friedman's musical adaptation of Love's Labour's Lost." Find out more on the Shakespeare in the Park website and stay tuned for details!

The Last Five Years—Behind the Scenes

In the second peak behind the scenes of the upcoming Second Stage revival of Jason Robert Brown's The Last Five Years, we watch as Brown directs stars Betsy Wolfe (Merrily We Roll Along) and Adam Kantor in the song "The Next Ten Minutes." Watch the video, and then head over to Second Stage to purchase your tickets!

Award Season Update

  • More musical performances have been announced for the Academy Awards. Oscars producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron announced this week that the broadcast will include a performance from the Academy Award-winning film adaptation of Chicago. The film's stars, Catherine Zeta-Jones (A Little Night Music), Richard Gere, Queen Latifah and Renee Zellweger will perform. Visit the Oscars blog for more details.

  • Check out this incredible new Oscars poster in which "Oscar" poses as the Best Picture winner. Can you figure them all out? My favorite, of course, is this one - Oscar as West Side Story. The academy partnered with Olly Moss and Gallery 1988 to create the poster.

  • Additional presenters have been announced, including: Reese Witherspoon (How Do You Know), Ben Affleck (Argo) Halle Berry, Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook) and Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty)

  • Hosting the pre-show (that is, the ABC red carpet coverage) will be Kristin Chenoweth, Entertainment Weekly Managing Editor Jess Cagle and Good Morning America's Lara Spencer and Robin Roberts. The Oscars blog has more.

  • Oscar host Seth MacFarlane is featured on the cover of this week's Entertainment Weekly, and discusses everything from the Oscars, Family Guy and his upcoming feature, A Million Ways to Die in the West (more news about that below).

  • From Funny or Die, two Oscar-themed episodes of Between two Ferns with Zach Galifianakis:

BAFTA Awards
The BAFTA Awards (essentially the British Oscars) were handed out on Sunday night. Argo took home the night's big prize, and director Ben Affleck was also honored. Other winners include Daniel Day-Lewis (Lincoln) and Christoph Waltz and Quentin Tarantino (Django Unchained). IMDB has the full list of winners, as well as lots of photo coverage: red carpet; press room; and parties (at which, apparently, Michael Fassbender (Shame) was a ubiquitous presence).

The Film Independent Spirit Awards, held the night before the Oscars, will be hosted by Andy Samberg, and this week, we learned that Dave Grohl and Chris Tucker (making a comeback in Silver Linings Playbook) will be among the presenters. Rolling Stone has details.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt on Sesame Street!

Tony Awards News

The Tony Awards administration committee met again to determine eligibility of some of the season's shows. Eligibility is based on opening night credits except as stipulated below (opening night credits dictate that any actor named above the title is a lead actor; those listed below are featured):
  • Patrick Page is eligible as a Featured Actor in a Play for Cyrano de Bergerac

  • Dan Stevens is eligible as a Featured Actor in a Play for The Heiress

  • Anthony Warlow and Lilla Crawford are eligible as Lead Actor/Actress in a Musical for Annie

  • Will Chase, Gregg Edelman and Chita Rivera are eligible as Featured Actor/Actress in a Musical for The Mystery of Edwin Drood

  • John Bolton, Johnny Rabe and Erin Dilly are eligible as Lead Actor/Actress in a  Musical for A Christmas Story

  • Seth Numrich is eligible as a Lead Actor in a Play for Golden Boy

  • Al Pacino, Bobby Cannavale, David Harbour and Richard Schiff are eligible as Featured Actor in a Play for Glengarry Glen Ross

  • Laurie Metcalf is eligible as a Lead Actress in a Play for The Other Place

  • Reed Birney, Sebastian Stan, Maggie Grace, Elizabeth Marvel, Mare Winningham and Ellen Burstyn are eligible as Featured Actor/Actress in a Play for Picnic
In addition, the short-lived The Performers did not run long enough to be eligible in any category, though both Scandalous and The Anarchist are eligible for nomination. What's important (and interesting, from a strategic perspective) to note is that none of the determinations above were made because the administration committee felt like considering those shows and performances. Show producers have to petition for eligibility consideration if they want their show and/or actors to be eligible in a category other than what's dictated by opening night credits.

(In other Tony news: reports rumors that Bette Midler and Barry Manilow, both of whom are or will appear on Broadway this season, will be the "opening act" for the Tony awards.)

Dave Grohl's Sound City

As he's promoting his documentary feature Sound City, Dave Grohl is making the rounds, recently participating in a Reddit AMA (ask me anything) session. Read the full archive of the session on Reddit, or read the highlights on Rolling Stone. (Good to note: Grohl mentions the Foo Fighters are already writing a new record!) Grohl also stopped by The Colbert Report to talk about the doc:

Dig This

  • Jonathan Groff (Spring Awakening, The Submission) has been cast in an HBO comedy pilot about young gay men in San Francisco. Playbill has details.

  • From the queue: To Rome with Love, Woody Allen's romp through Rome.

  • Amanda Seyfried (Les Miserables) may be joining Charlize Theron in Seth MacFarlane's western,  A Million Ways to Die in the West. Visit The Hollywood Reporter for details.

  • As if Jessie Mueller and Kelli O'Hara in the NY Phil's concert of Carousel weren't enough, we learned this week that NYCB principal dancers Tiler Peck and Robert Fairchild will perform the "If I Loved You" pas de deux! Get your tickets now.

  • Tune in to PBS this Saturday night to catch Gary Clark, Jr., on Austin City Limits. Check your local listings for air times.

  • The season finale of Downton Abbey airs this Sunday so Rolling Stone offers a round up of the best Dowager Countess zingers.

  • Have a "sneak listen" at one of the songs from the Broadway-bound Big Fish, starring Norbert Leo Butz (Catch Me if You Can, How I Learned to Drive) and Kate Baldwin (Finian's Rainbow). This song is called "Time Stops," and occurs when Edward (Butz) first meets Sandra (Baldwin). The production is directed and choreographed by Susan Stroman, who introduces the song.