When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson

15 December 2007

Appearing tonight in the leading role: nobody you've ever heard of

If, as is increasingly the case, stars cannot be relied on to commit to a long run, or show up for eight performances a week, month in and month out, producers may exclusively pursue material that doesn't require a particular personality to put it across. ("We are much closer to doing theme-park shows than we ever were," as Mr. Azenberg puts it.) The problems that bedeviled the producers of "The Producers" in trying to find suitably starry replacements for Mr. Lane and his co-star Matthew Broderick underscore the point. While it's still a major hit, the show lost altitude once its marquee stars departed, and will probably not match the marathon runs of the biggest Brit shows. At the same time, revivals may soon be exclusively entrusted to visiting television and movie names with varying musical abilities, like [Brooke] Shields (great comedian, so-so singer) and Hugh Jackman (full marks on all counts).
Charles Isherwood, "Broadway's No-Show Business," The New York Times

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