×

Newman to direct ‘Of Mice and Men’

Westport Country Playhouse sets fall revival

Though he retired from acting last year, Paul Newman returns to the boards this fall as helmer of “Of Mice and Men” at the Westport Country Playhouse, co-run by his wife Joanne Woodward.

The John Steinbeck stage adaptation will play Oct. 7 to Nov. 1. Show will mark the professional stage directing bow for Newman, who helmed a number of films from the 1960s to the 1980s including “Rachel, Rachel” and “The Glass Menagerie.”

Before that, Timothy Busfield (TV’s “thirtysomething,” “The West Wing”) will open the playhouse’s 78th season in Morris Panych’s dark comedy “Vigil,” which will play Feb. 26 to March 15. Helen Stenborg will also be featured in the show, presented in partnership with Daryl Roth Productions and Angelo Fraboni. Stephen DiMenna helms.

Scratched from former a.d. Tazewell Thompson’s previously announced season are “A Strange and Separate People” and “Sweet Bird of Youth” with Phylicia Rashad. In their place will be Alan Ayckbourn’s “Time of My Life,” helmed by John Tillinger and starring Paxton Whitehead, and the thriller “Tryst” with Mark Shanahan. Joe Brancato, who staged the off-Broadway run, will helm.

Popular on Variety

Other shows of the season will be Craig Wright’s “The Pavilion,” the musical revue “Hot ‘n’ Cole: A Cole Porter Celebration!” and David Wiltse’s “Scramble!”

Newman, 83, has been a longtime supporter of the playhouse, starring in a 2002 production of “Our Town” which later went to the Rialto and then lensed for PBS. He also runs a restaurant, the Dressing Room, adjacent to the theater.

Woodward and longtime theater associate Anne Keefe are interim artistic directors since Thompson ankled last month. Woodward had been artistic director emeritus when Thompson was hired two years ago.

More Legit

  • Protesters demonstrate at the Broadway opening

    'West Side Story' Broadway Opening Night Sparks Protests

    Roughly 100 protestors gathered outside the Broadway premiere of “West Side Story” on Thursday night, carrying placards and chanting in unison to demand the removal of cast member Amar Ramasar. “Hey, hey, ho, ho, Ramasar has got to go,” they cried while holding signs that read “Keep predators off the stage,” “Sexual predators shouldn’t get [...]

  • West Side Story review

    'West Side Story': Theater Review

    Whittled down to one hour and forty-five minutes, “West Side Story” – with book by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, and choreography by Jerome Robbins — has grown exceedingly dark and mislaid some of its moving parts in the new Broadway revival from edgy Belgian director Ivo Van Hove. (Can [...]

  • The Inheritance review

    'The Inheritance' Closing in March After Box Office Struggles

    “The Inheritance,” a sprawling and ambitious epic that grappled with the legacy of the AIDS epidemic, will close on March 15. The two-part play has struggled mightily at the box office despite receiving strong reviews. Last week, it grossed $345,984, or 52% of its capacity, a dispiriting number for a show that was reported to [...]

  • MCC theater presents 'Alice By Heart'

    Steven Sater on Adapting 'Alice by Heart' From a Musical to a Book

    When producers approached lyricist Steven Sater (“Spring Awakening”) to adapt Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” into a musical, his initial reaction was to recoil. His initial thought was that the book didn’t have a beginning, middle and an ending. But Sater pulled it off with his production of “Alice By Heart.” After an off-Broadway [...]

  • The Lehman Trilogy review

    Sam Mendes' 'Lehman Trilogy' Kicks off Ahmanson's New Season

    Sam Mendes’ “The Lehman Trilogy,” which took London’s West End by storm will be part of the Ahmanson’s lineup for the 2020-21 season. It will be joined by Broadway hits “Hadestown” and “To Kill a Mockingbird.” Artistic director Michael Ritchie announced the season that will also feature four fan favorites and another production to be [...]

  • Zoe Caldwell Dead

    Zoe Caldwell, Four-Time Tony Winner, Dies at 86

    Zoe Caldwell, an Australian actress with a talent for illuminating the human side of imposing icons such as Cleopatra and Maria Callas in a career that netted her four Tony Awards, died on Sunday due to complications from Parkinson’s disease, according to her son Charlie Whitehead. She was 86. Caldwell occasionally appeared in television and [...]

  • Cambodian Rock Band interview

    Listen: How 'Cambodian Rock Band' Became One of the Most Produced Plays in the U.S.

    One of the hottest trends in American theater this season is Cambodian surf rock from the 1970s — and that’s thanks to “Cambodian Rock Band.” Listen to this week’s Stagecraft podcast below: Playwright Lauren Yee’s genre-bending stage show, part family drama and part rock concert, has become one of the most-produced plays in the U.S. this season. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content