Nichols brings ‘Girl’ to Broadway

Director revamps revival for springtime

Mike Nichols is gearing up for a return to Broadway, aiming to bring a revival of Clifford Odets’ “The Country Girl” to the Rialto in the spring.

The helmer, currently repped on the Rialto with “Monty Python’s Spamalot,” is at work assembling a cast that includes Morgan Freeman and Frances McDormand for the 1950 play that tells the backstage tale of an alcoholic actor (Freeman) making his comeback on Broadway.

“Country Girl” was made into a 1954 pic that starred Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly and William Holden. It was revived on Broadway in 1972 with a cast topped by Jason Robards and Maureen Stapleton.

Both Freeman and McDormand were last on Broadway, in different productions, in 1988.

Also a possibility on Nichols’ sked is a new play, “Farragut North,” a political drama aiming to come together in time for the presidential election in fall 2008. Jake Gyllenhaal, who has appeared in an earlier reading of the play, is said to be eyeing the lead role.

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