Jennifer Tilly Joins All-Star "Casablanca" Reading

News   Jennifer Tilly Joins All-Star "Casablanca" Reading Jennifer Tilly, seen on Broadway in the 2001 revival of The Women, has joined the star-studded cast for the upcoming benefit reading of "Casablanca."

Tilly will play Yvonne, the role created on film by Madeleine LeBeau. The actress joins the previously announced Tommy Lee Jones, Theodore Bikel, James Cromwell and Eric Szmanda for the reading of the landmark Warner Bros. screenplay, which will benefit the Actors' Fund of America.

"Casablanca" follows acclaimed readings of "All About Eve" and "Sunset Boulevard." The Actors' Fund will present the David Rambo adaptation of "Casablanca" April 3 at 4 PM at the Pantages Theatre in California. Peter Hunt will direct the reading of the new stage take on the screenplay by Julius J. Epstein, Philip G. Epstein and Howard Koch. More casting will be announced shortly.

Jones (A Patriot for Me, True West, "The Fugitive," "Men in Black") will take on the role (made famous by Humphrey Bogart) of Rick Blaine, Bikel (The Sound of Music, "The Defiant Ones") plays Carl, Cromwell (Hamlet, "Angels in America," "L.A. Confidential") will be Major Strasser and Eric Szmanda ("CSI: Crime Scene Investigation") portrays Jan Brandel.

The Morocco-set story of "Casablanca" follows the chance meeting of an American exile night club owner and his former love at the titular gateway city during World War II. The film — starring Bogart and Ingrid Bergman — won 1944 Academy Awards for Best Director (Michael Curtiz), Best Picture (Hal B. Wallis) and Best Writing (Epstein, Epstein and Koch).

Jennifer Tilly was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance in Woody Allen's "Bullets Over Broadway." Her numerous other screen credits include "A Piece of My Heart," "Nowhere to Go But Up," "Hollywood North," "The Cat's Meow," "Fast Sofa," "The Crew," "Bruno," "Cord," "Do Not Disturb," "Goosed," "Bride of Chucky," "Hoods," "Relax...It's Just Sex," "Gun," "Bella Mafia," "The Wrong Guy," "Edie & Pen," "Liar Liar," "Bound," "House Arrest," "The Getaway," "The Webbers," "The Doors," "Johnny Be Good," "Inside out" and "He's My Girl." The Actors' Fund of America is the only national non-profit organization that provides for the social welfare of all entertainment professionals. For more information, visit www.actorsfund.org.

The Pantages Theater is located at 6233 Hollywood Boulevard. Tickets, priced $28 $153, will be available through The Actors’ Fund by calling (323) 933 9244, ext. 54 or 35. Sponsorship/VIP packages, priced $250-$25,000, are also available.

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