Former child film star Macaulay Culkin will make his Off-Broadway debut this spring when the West End hit, Richard Nelson's play, Madame Melville, opens at the Promenade Theatre. The New York Times reported Feb. 2 that the show would open April 2. Culkin will be the only member of the UK cast to make the journey over.
Madame Melville opened at the Vaudeville Theatre on Oct. 18, following previews from Oct. 7.
Playbill On-Line first reported Nelson's intention to move the play to New York in June 2000, and reported Culkin's interest on Aug. 2. Culkin auditioned for the role of the young man who is seduced by his thirty-something French teacher in a bid to resuscitate his stalled acting career. Now 19, he became a phenomenon in the early 1990s with starring roles in films including "Home Alone," "Home Alone 2: Lost in New York," "My Girl," "The Good Son" and "Richie Rich."
But, as with many child stars, Culkin had trouble securing parts as he got older. Personal and professional problems, particularly with his separated parents who waged a fierce custody battle for control over him and his finances, didn't help. Culkin's last film role was in 1994's "Getting Even with Dad."
Madame Melville is produced in the West End by Gregory Mosher, Adam Kenwright and Andrew Fell. *
Nelson won a Tony for his book to James Joyce's The Dead, which he co-wrote and directed and which played Broadway this season. The Dead, a musical adaptation of James Joyce's short story, originated at Off-Broadway's Playwrights Horizons last fall. It quickly sold out and transferred to Broadway, but closed in April. It failed to win any other Tony Awards, including that for best musical, but one of its stars, Blair Brown, won for her performance in Copenhagen.
Nelson's other plays include New England, Some Americans Abroad and Two Shakespearean Actors.
and Terri Paddock