Stephen Lang, who plays opposite Carol Kane in the current cast of The Bat Theatre Company's production of The Guys, will be joined by Marlo Thomas for the latter portion of his stay. The show — which opened recently in Los Angeles with Helen Hunt and former New York cast member Tim Robbins — will feature the Marlo Lang cast July 30-Aug. 28.
Kane, who leaves the show earlier than scheduled to prepare for her upcoming television series "The Grubbs," will play her final performance July 19. A stage and screen actress, Kane has appeared in The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the Moon Marigolds, Ring Around the Bathtub, The Vagina Monologues, Steve Martin's WASP and most recently in Family Week. She is widely known for her quirky portrayals in such films as "The Princess Bride" (opposite Billy Crystal's Miracle Max), "Scrooged" (as the Ghost of Christmas Present), "Joe Versus the Volcano" and "My Blue Heaven," as well as TV's "Taxi."
Thomas — television's "That Girl" or mother to Rachel Green (Jennifer Aniston) on "Friends" — has appeared on the Broadway stage in The Shadow Box, Social Security and Thieves. Other credits include The Vagina Monologues, Six Degrees of Separation, and most recently Paper Doll. Thomas also created the "Free To Be...You and Me" TV specials, books and records, which was recently adapted for the stage at The Drama Dept.
Actor Lang has appeared on the Broadway stage in Wait Until Dark, The Roundabout Theatre Company's 1992 Hamlet as the great Dane, The Speed of Darkness, A Few Good Men and as Happy to Dustin Hoffman's Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman. His Off-Broadway credits include Awake and Sing! and this season's 36 Views at The Public Theater.
The hot tickets are $55. Limited $15 tickets for firemen and Port Authority workers with ID. Rush Tickets ($25) are sold on the same day, based on availability. The Flea is at 41 White Street in Tribeca. For reservations, call (212) 206-1515 or visit www.thebat.com. *
The Guys, based on scribe Anne Nelson's real experiences, is a dialogue between a New York City fire captain — who has lost most of his men in the Sept. 11 attack — and an editor who helps him write the eulogies, as she struggles to come to terms with the event. Both find out, as quoted from the text, "We have no idea what wonders lie hidden in the people around us."
The rotating casts of big name stars have lifted the little-known Off-Off Broadway troupe headed up by artistic director Jim Simpson to headlines. Following a workshop in December 2001 at the Bat's 80-seat venue, the play by first-time playwright Nelson, returned in January with Bill Murray and Sigourney Weaver (Simpson's wife) in the leads. Subsequent performers included Bill Irwin, Anthony LaPaglia, Susan Sarandon, Tim Robbins, Swoosie Kurtz, Tom Wopat, Amy Irving and Carol Kane.
Bat artistic director Jim Simpson helms the work. Costumes are by Claudia Brown, set and lights are by Kyle Chepulis.
The show has also spawned a West coast production at Los Angeles' The Actors' Gang featuring artistic director Tim Robbins and star Helen Hunt. Further casts are expected.
The play's not the only thing for this little-show-that-could. ContentFilm has signed on to finance, produce and distribute the screen version of the play starring Weaver and LaPaglia. Bat-man Simpson, who directed the play, adapted the screen version with some additions and will also take the helm for the film.
The Guys will also hit bookshelves in August as the play will be published by Random House. The paperback will also include two new essays by Nelson and photos from the theatrical production.
— by Ernio Hernandez