Despite rave reviews for Alan Rickman and the cast of Theresa Rebeck‘s caustic comedy of literature and sex, Seminar, the Broadway show shuttered last Sunday in a whimper, not a bang. This blow came one month after an almost complete turnover in the cast, with new members Justin Long, Zoe Lister-Jones, and Jeff Goldblum taking over from Hamish Linklater, Lily Rabe, and Mr. Rickman, respectively. Read More
Recently, the public got its hands on the 35-page complaint that Julie Taymor and her company LOH Inc. filed in response to the countersuit launched by the producers of Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark.
To catch up: Ms. Taymor sued the producers of the show for using her material after firing her, won a ton of money, but is still suing them for more money. The defendants in the case — 8 Legged Productions, LLC, Hello Entertainment LLC, Goodbye Entertainment LLC, Michael Cohl, Glen Berger, Jeremiah Harris, and Savior Productions LLC — include the producers who recently launched the countersuit, claiming that Ms. Taymor’s detrimental influence on the production hurt the show and cost them money. Also, her co-author for the book, Glen Berger. Back and forth, forever and ever.
While we’re waiting for this mess to get untangled (spider web pun!) in court, Ms. Taymor’s complaint contains enough juicy dirt on show creator Bono and his cohorts to keep us entertained for the rest of the week. Here are the 10 most soap opera moments from the document, so you don’t have to slog through the paperwork yourself. Read More
There’s one less lawsuit plaguing the cast of Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark today, as the theater-director union decided yesterday to settle claims in favor of Julie Taymor to continue receiving royalties for the production, despite the fact that she was booted out of her director’s chair back in March. The New York Post reports that this decision could lead to $10k a week for the rest of Spidey’s run. Read More
Since we first saw Christian Bale prancing across dusty Manhattan streets belting “Santa Fe,” we’ve held a torch in our heart for the 1992 Disney live-action flop Newsies. We don’t even care the Roger Ebert once likened the film to “warmed-over Horatio Alger,” since deep down we knew that one day, we’d have the chance to audition for a stage production of the show. (In our fantasy, we weren’t Christian Bale/Jack Kelly’s love interest, Sarah, because she was a goody-goody. We were always Ann-Margret‘s brassy saloon singer, Medda Larkson.)
Now our dreams are that much closer to coming true, as the New Jersey production of Newsies at the Paper Mill Theater has just announced the full line-up for its Broadway debut on March 15th. Read More
Though the production has been accident free since its official premiere at the Foxwood Theatre in June, there’s still more blood to be spilled over Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark. On November 8th, Julie Taymor, the ousted director of the play (along with her production company, LOH, Inc.) filed suit against the producers of the once-cursed production, saying that they had violated her creative rights and haven’t compensated her for her work on the play.
Despite being currently tied to other projects, actor/Wolverine Hugh Jackman and Social Network scribe/cocaine-craver Aaron Sorkin have signed on to do a musical for Broadway’s 2013-14 season. Here’s the pitch: it’s about Harry Houdini, and, wait for it, it’s a musical! (Obviously it’s a musical, Hugh Jackman’s contract demands that he must be singing and dancing for at least 90% of any stage appearance.)
This weekend, Broadway’s most expensive show* celebrated it’s first birthday by finally . That’s right, somehow Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark defied all the bookie odds and managed to stay in previews (and a brief hiatus) for 7 months before opening in June. Now it’s “officially” been at the Foxwoods Theatre for one year. Happy birthday Spidey! Read More
Reviewing the ill-fated Woody Allen-Elaine May-Ethan Coen disaster Relatively Speaking, I thought I had seen the worst evening the New York theater season could possibly endure. I was wrong. I had not yet seen a pile of filthy, moronic drivel called The Atmosphere of Memory by a delusional, no-talent writer called David Bar Katz. Spending two and a half hours down on Bank Street at the Labyrinth Theater Co., in the most uncomfortable, makeshift, black shoebox in town (with the worst sight lines), is a new kind of hell. The play is nothing to write home about either. Read More
After suffering through the fetid Relatively Speaking, my pain must have shown in the scowl on my face as I trudged toward the exit at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre. “To get it, you have to be Jewish,” said a woman ahead of me. What nonsense. Since when do you have to be gay to see the truth in The Boys in the Band, or black to be moved by the universal humanity of Lorraine Hansberry or August Wilson? My date was Jewish, and she didn’t laugh either. Well, she later admitted over a badly needed post-theater nightcap, she did laugh at a couple of lines. O.K., two laughs in a 2½ hour evening of three alleged one-act “comedies” is not what I call much of a success, and Relatively Speaking is a vulgar, poker-faced failure of dire proportions. You don’t have to be Jewish to know bad writing, hysterical overacting and lame direction when you see it, even if the guilty perpetrators include Elaine May and Woody Allen, two of my heroes, actors such as Marlo Thomas and Steve Guttenberg, and director John Turturro, who should stick to acting. All of them have triumphed on previous occasions. This is not one of them. Read More