Tony committee issues final eligibility rulings

Canavale is a lead; Falco and Leigh are featured

The Tony Awards Administration Committee has issued Tony eligibility rulings on Bobby Canavale, Edie Falco, Jennifer Jason Leigh and John Laroquette, among other actors, folllowing its final meeting prior to the Tony nominations announcement Tuesday.

Committee considered a whopping 19 productions at the meeting, one of four held periodically throughout the season. Rulings most often concern eligibility decisions that deviate from the traditional guidelines that consider above-the-title thesps eligible for lead acting noms and below-the-title eligible for featured.

Two of the three road-tripping drag queens of “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert,” Will Swenson and Tony Sheldon, will be in contention for lead acting slots, while fellow queen Nick Adams will be in the mix for a featured nom. A pair from “The Book of Mormon,” Andrew Rannells and Josh Gad, also have been classified as leads.

Falco and Leigh, above-the-title co-stars with Ben Stiller in “The House of Blue Leaves,” will both be considered for featured noms, as will John Laroquette of “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” and Joel Grey for “Anything Goes.”

Canavale has been deemed a lead for his perf in “The Motherfucker With the Hat.” Other potention lead thesping contenders including Joe Mantello (“The Normal Heart”), Seth Numrich (“War Horse”) and Colin Donnell (“Anything Goes”).Among non-thesps, scribe Douglas Carter Beane, who contributed additional material to the book of “Sister Act,” will be eligible in the book category with the tuner’s original book writers, Cheri and Bill Steinkellner.

It’s worth noting that, come Tuesday, there will only be four nominations rather than the traditional five in the category of lead actress in a musical. That’s because there were fewer than seven actresses eligible for that category, in a Broadway season heavy on male-dominated tuners.

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