Overlooked By the Tonys: The Stars and Shows That Were Not Nominated

Tony Awards   Overlooked By the Tonys: The Stars and Shows That Were Not Nominated
 
It must be a fun house at the Circle in the Square Theatre, currently home to Fun Home, the new musical that earned 12 Tony Award nominations April 28; and a divine blessing may have been sent to Hand to God, which also was a favorite among the nominations. But noticeably absent from the nominations were some surprising misses, including some Hollywood heavyweights (John Lithgow, Martha Plimpton, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Ewan McGregor and Glenn Close, to name just a few). But along with the big-name stars, several productions did not receive any nominations at all.
Matthew Morrison in <i>Finding Neverland</i>
Matthew Morrison in Finding Neverland Photo by Carol Rosegg

TV favorite and Tony winner David Hyde Pierce made his Broadway directorial debut with It Shoulda Been You, a new musical featuring some solid stage stars (Tyne Daly, Harriet Harris) and breakout star Lisa Howard. But the committee decided no nominations shoulda gone to the new musical.

The musical Finding Neverland was showing up in headlines before it even opened on Broadway. But producer Harvey Weinstein's passion project, featuring "Glee" star Matthew Morrison in his first return to the Broadway stage since 2008's South Pacific, didn't find any love from the nominating committee. Despite its lack of nominations, the musical is proving to be an audience favorite, taking in over $1 million at the box office.

Another musical pushed to the side was was Side Show, the revised and re-envisioned musical about conjoined twins Daisy and Violet Hilton. After a short run on Broadway in 1997, the cult favorite musical returned with a revised book and new songs. But its return run was still cut short — too short to be remembered after the spring rush of musicals. Even its stars, Erin Davie and Emily Padgett, who earned critical raves, were left off the nominees list.

Fans of "Seinfeld" and "Curb Your Enthusiasm" have flocked to the Cort Theatre to see Larry David in action onstage in Fish in the Dark, David's playwriting and Broadway debut about a family coping with an unexpected death. But the record-breaking production was left in the dark when it came to Tony nominations. The comedy can also be counted among box office blockbusters (consistently taking in over $1 million) overlooked at Tony time.  

Also on the list of ignored box office hits is Terrence McNally's behind-the-scenes comedy It's Only a Play. The comedy featured big-name Broadway stars Nathan Lane, Megan Mullally, Matthew Broderick, F. Murray Abraham and Stockard Channing, but none of the comedic team took home a nomination; instead the show's only acting nomination went to newcomer Micah Stock, who made his Broadway debut in the production. Hollywood siblings Maggie and Jake Gyllenhaal both made their Broadway debuts in The Real Thing and Constellations, respectively. But neither of the two were nominated, nor was Broadway Golden Boy, previous Tony winner and frequent Tony host Hugh Jackman, who starred in the somber drama The River. "High School Musical" star Vanessa Hudgens brought Gigi back to Broadway in a revised production of the musical, but her spirited performance did not earn a Leading Actress nomination, and Hollywood heavyweights Michael Cera and Larry David were also overlooked.

Living on Love, Joe DiPietro's comedy featuring renowned opera star Renée Fleming, did not receive any nominations, nor did Fleming herself in her Broadway debut as an over-the-top opera diva.

Two more film-to-stage adaptations were overlooked by the nominations: Honeymoon in Vegas, Jason Robert Brown's critically-praised musical adaptation of the comedic film, and Doctor Zhivago, the epic musical about tragic love during the Russian Revolution.

Several plays that opened in the fall were not remembered by the spring, including a revival of Tom Stoppard's The Real Thing, Donald Margulies's The Country House, Jez Butterworth's The River, a revival of A.R. Gurney's Love Letters and Edward Albee's A Delicate Balance, as well as the short-lived summer production of Holler If Ya Hear Me.

Scott Pask had a busy year, designing the sets for It's Only a Play, Finding Neverland, Something Rotten!, Airline Highway and The Visit, but none of his work was recognized with a nomination.

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