“Shrek” has finally found its ogre, with Brian d’Arcy James playing the big green guy in the upcoming legit adaptation of the DreamWorks Animation property.
Chester Gregory II (“Tarzan,” “Cry-Baby”) will portray sidekick Donkey, while John Tartaglia (“Avenue Q”) will play Pinocchio.
Long casting process for the roles of Shrek and Donkey has provoked much speculation along the Rialto. When a preview event for the developing tuner was held in Gotham last month, the only three confirmed cast members were Sutton Foster (“The Drowsy Chaperone”) as Princess Fiona, Christopher Sieber (“Monty Python’s Spamalot”) as evil Lord Farquaad and Kecia Lewis-Evans (“Drowsy”) as the dragon.
James, whose Rialto credits include “The Lieutenant of Inishmore” and “Sweet Smell of Success,” most recently appeared on Broadway in the Roundabout revival of “The Apple Tree” last season.
Based on the 2001 CG pic as well as the 1990 William Steig book that inspired it, “Shrek” has music by Jeanine Tesori (“Caroline, or Change”) and book by David Lindsay-Abaire (“Rabbit Hole”). Jason Moore (“Avenue Q”) directs.
Musical marks the first offering from DreamWorks Theatricals, the new legit arm of DreamWorks Animation. Org co-produces with Neal Street Prods.Tuner will try out at the 5th Avenue Theater in Seattle in August in preparation for a Rialto run that begins previews at the Broadway Theater Nov. 8 ahead of a Dec. 14 opening.