You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘Merchant of Venice’ covers its $3.45 million cost

Broadway play starring Pacino enters the black

Topliner Al Pacino has helped propel the Broadway revival of “The Merchant of Venice” into the black, with the play making back its $3.45 million capitalization costs in 10 weeks, according to producers.

Recoupment isn’t much of a surprise since “Merchant,” one of the hits of the season, is a rare nontuner that regularly pulls in more than $1 million in weekly sales. Play has topped the million mark in seven of its 10 frames on the boards.

Future earnings will rep a profit for producers (minus the show’s weekly running costs). Production goes on hiatus Sunday, its original closing date, due to Pacino’s previous film commitment, then starts up again for a three-week run beginning Feb. 1.

The star-driven play “God of Carnage” went on a similar hiatus. Producers of the Tony winner opted to shut down for a six-week summer break in late July 2009, and the entire original cast, including James Gandolfini and Marcia Gay Harden, returned to the boards in September.

Also starring Lily Rabe, the Daniel Sullivan-helmed revival of “Merchant” originated last summer in a Shakespeare in the Park production from the Public Theater. Strong ticket demand and positive reviews helped push the play toward a commercial run that began Oct. 19 at the Broadhurst Theater.

Produced by the Public, Jeffrey Richards and Jerry Frankel, “Merchant” has so far grossed about $12 million in its time on the boards.

More Legit

  • Hadestown review

    Broadway Review: 'Hadestown'

    “Hadestown” triggered a lot of buzz when this wholly American show (which came to the stage by way of a concept album) premiered at Off Broadway’s New York Theatre Workshop in 2016. Arriving on Broadway with its earthly delights more or less intact, this perfectly heavenly musical — with book, music and lyrics by Anaïs [...]

  • Burn This review

    Broadway Review: Adam Driver, Keri Russell in 'Burn This'

    The ache for an absent artist permeates Lanford Wilson’s “Burn This,” now receiving a finely-tuned Broadway revival that features incendiary performances by Adam Driver and Keri Russell, playing two lost souls in a powerful and passionate dance of denial. AIDS is never mentioned in this 1987 play, yet the epidemic and the profound grief that [...]

  • White Noise Suzan-Lori Parks

    Listen: The 'Dumb Joke' Hidden in 'White Noise'

    Suzan-Lori Parks’ new play “White Noise” tackles a host of urgent, hot-button topics, including racism and slavery — but, according to the playwright, there’s also a “dumb joke” buried in it. Listen to this week’s podcast below: Appearing with “White Noise” director Oskar Eustis on “Stagecraft,” Variety‘s theater podcast, Parks revealed that the inspiration for [...]

  • Adam Driver appears at the curtain

    Adam Driver on Starring in 'Burn This' for a Second Time

    The Hudson Theatre’s new production of “Burn This” marks its first Broadway revival since it premiered on the Great White Way in 1987, but Adam Driver is no stranger to the work. He starred as Pale in a Juilliard production of the Lanford Wilson drama when he was still a student — and only now, [...]

  • Alan Wasser

    Alan Wasser, Tony-Winning Broadway General Manager, Dies at 70

    Alan Wasser, a veteran Broadway general manager who received an honorary Tony Award, died from complications from Parkinson’s disease in New York on Sunday. He was 70. Wasser founded Alan Wasser Associates and general managed “Les Misérables,” “The Phantom of the Opera” and “Miss Saigon,” three of the most successful productions of all time. He [...]

  • Aretha Franklin Clinton inauguration

    Pulitzer Prizes: Aretha Franklin, Trump Tax Cheating Story Honored

    Donald Trump will have something to hate tweet about this afternoon. The Pulitzer Prizes awarded two hard-hitting investigations into the 45th president during its annual ceremony on Monday. The New York Times earned a prize in explanatory reporting for an 18-month investigation into the elaborate steps that Trump and his family went to in an [...]

  • A German Life review

    London Theater Review: Maggie Smith in 'A German Life'

    How helpful are warnings from history? Two years ago, in February 2017, Amazon briefly sold out its entire stock of Hannah Arendt’s 500-page treatise, “The Origins of Totalitarianism.” In it, the German-born philosopher surveys the conditions that gave rise to Nazi rule, charting fascism’s incremental creep. Social shifts are slow, sometimes too slow to spot, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content