Writer Nora Ephron will follow further into her parents' footsteps as the first stagework by the daughter of the stage and screenwriting couple Henry and Phoebe Ephron will make its world premiere run at San Diego's The Globe Theatre Sept. 21-Nov. 3 before reaching the Great White Way.
The play with music titled Imaginary Friends enjoyed a Nov. 2 staged reading at the New 42nd Street Studio directed by The Full Monty and Invention of Love helmer Jack O'Brien. Actresses Christine Baranski and Cherry Jones (Major Barbara) starred in the reading as the literary feuding femmes Lillian Hellman and Mary McCarthy. Crazy for You's Harry Groener played all the male characters.
For the Old Globe premiere, which is being tagged as a "pre-Broadway run," O'Brien is still at the helm with star Jones according to production spokespersons. No further casting has been confirmed.
Songs featured in the play are penned by the composer-lyricist team of Marvin Hamlisch and Craig Carnelia. The duo are already on the boards as their Sweet Smell of Success opened on Broadway March 14. The work opens at San Diego's The Globe Theatre — where O'Brien serves as artistic director.
Ephron—or, rather, her life—is no stranger to the stage; her early childhood was the focus of her parents' Three's a Family, and Take Her, She's Mine was based on her correspondence with them during her college years. The writer is best known for her screenplays for "When Harry Met Sally...," "You've Got Mail" and "Sleepless in Seattle" (she directed the latter two). Bill Haber, who heads USA Ostar Theatricals, produced the reading. USA Ostar Theatricals were also the producers of the new Broadway revival of Hedda Gabler as well as Neil LaBute's The Shape of Things.