Week in Review 1.24.14

(Scroll down for news about Bradley Cooper's return to Broadway!)

Awards Season Updates

Well, there's been a lot going on on the award show circuit.
  • Saturday night was the first of the major guild awards: the Screen Actors Guild Awards were presented. For full coverage, check out my wrap up, which includes a fashion review and the full list of winners.

  • On Sunday, the Producers Guild handed out its awards, and, for the first time, honored two films, 12 Years a Slave and Gravity, with its top honor. (The Hollywood Reporter's Scott Feinberg weighs in regarding what the PGA Awards mean for Oscar hopefuls. And his colleague, Ben Zauzmer, crunches the numbers to find out the odds of such a tie at the Oscars.)

  • Of course, last week, the Oscar nominations were announced, and, on the same day, the Critics' Choice Movie Awards were presented. Feinberg once again analyzed the goings on, and in his latest Feinberg Forecast, has the Academy Award nominees ranked.

  • Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese have been officially named producers of The Wolf of Wall Street for the purposes of Oscars credit. This makes both men double nominees. Gold Derby has details. More Academy Awards news: The Hollywood Reporter's Feinberg considers the long-shot chances of Philomena taking home the top honor.

  • Rolling Stone reports that Dave Grohl and other rockers will close out the Grammys this Sunday night. So, after Downton Abbey, switch over to CBS to see Grohl, Trent Reznor and others show these kids how it's done.
(Note: The various guilds' awards are "important" because the awards are voted on by people who vote for Academy Awards; they tend to be good indicators of what will happen on Oscar night.)
Here Lies Love is Back!

Great news: the incredible, boundary-pushing and immersive theatrical experience that is Here Lies Love is coming back to the Public. Originally conceived by Talking Heads' David Byrne and staged by the incomparable Alex Timbers (Peter and the Starcatcher, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson), the musical tells the story of former Filipina first lady Imelda Marcos and Timbers sets the goings on in a club; there are no seats. Instead, the audience stands, moves and dances along with the actors. The production, with most of the original cast in tow, will return to the LuEsther Theater at the Public in March for an open-ended run. Broadway.com has more. (Playbill notes that Byrne says the show will return on March 31.)

(Speaking of Alex Timbers, watch below as he talks about his upcoming Broadway show, the musical adaptation of Rocky.)

Jimmy Fallon's Tonight Show

The SNL alumnus and current Late Night host is getting ready to take over The Tonight Show, and, in doing so, bringing the long-running talk show back to New York (where it belongs). Fallon's incarnation of the show will premiere on February 17, and his first guests will be Will Smith and U2.  Before that, Fallon will say goodbye to his Late Night gig, with pal and SNL alumna Amy Poehler appearing as his final guest. Poehler will stick around and be Seth Meyers's first guest when the current SNL "Weekend Update" anchor and former head writer takes over Late Night on February 24. Buzz Feed has more. And in related news, the Update desk has a new anchor: SNL head writer Colin Jost will join Cecily Strong on March 1. Vulture has more.

Broadway Updates

  • Hooray for the casting gods! Michael Esper (American Idiot, The Lyons) will join Nina Arianda (Venus in Fur) in MTC's upcoming off-Broadway production of Tales from Red Vienna. Esper, as well as Tina Benk, Michael Goldsmith and Lucas Hall, join a company that, in addition to Arianda, also includes Kathleen Chalfant. Kate Whoriskey directs David Grimm's new play. Tales begins previews on February 26; opening night is set for March 18 and the play will run through April 27. Playbill has more.

  • Seriously, the casting gods are working overtime. Colin Donnell (Anything Goes, Merrily We Roll Along) and Joshua Henry (American Idiot, The Scottsboro Boys) are joining two-time Tony Award winner Sutton Foster (Anything Goes, Bunheads) in the upcoming Roundabout staging of Violet.  (Check out the promo photo on the right. That's a pretty good looking and talented cast, right?) Henry is reprising his role, having appeared with Foster in last year's Encores! production. Directed by Leigh Silverman (The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligence, The Call), Violet, with book and lyrics by Brian Crawley and music by Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home), will play the American Airlines Theatre. Previews begin March 28 with opening night set for April 20. The limited engagement is scheduled to conclude its run on August 10. Broadway.com has more.

  • The Realistic Joneses, the new Will Eno play with a starry cast, has a home and a preview date. The play will run at the Lyceum Theatre (available because A Night with Janis Joplin is closing), with previews beginning on March 13 prior to an April 6 opening night. The play stars Michael C. Hall (Dexter), Marisa Tomei (The Ides of March), Tracy Letts (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?) and Toni Collette (The Way Way Back). Playbill has more.

  • At the beginning of the week, Entertainment Weekly had Bradley Cooper's representatives confirming the Academy Award-nominated actor's return to Broadway this fall. Cooper (American Hustle, Silver Linings Playbook) had previously stated that he hoped to return to Broadway in the title role in a production of The Elephant Man, a role he played in 2012 at the Williamstown Theatre Festival (WTF). Later in the week, it was announced that Cooper's WTF co-stars, Patricia Clarkson (Shutter Island) and Alessandro Nivola (The Winslow Boy, American Hustle), will join him in the Broadway bow.  The production still does not have a home, however, and dates have yet to be announced.

Natural Woman: Backstage at Beautiful with Jessie Mueller

Have you been watching Broadway.com's newest backstage vlog, "Natural Woman," featuring Beautiful 's leading lady Jessie Mueller? If not, get on that. It's a fun look backstage at the Carole King musical, and Mueller is an excellent hostess. She gives us a peek at the oddball antics taking place at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre, and let's us catch a glimpse of her own personality. Watch as she and the cast get ready for opening night (in the first episode) and as Mueller lip-synchs with "Sunday," from Sunday in the Park with George (in the second episode). Catch a new "Natural Woman" next week!

Dig This

  • Watch the cast of Downton Abbey talk about the "hunks" populating the estate! 

  • NBC announced that its next live musical presentation will be Peter Pan. Playbill has more.

  • Rejoice: Parks and Recreation will return for a seventh season! Buzz Feed has celebratory GIFs.

  • Live from Lincoln Center is coming back, and will air several of the upcoming American Songbook concerts. Playbill has details.