Broadway veteran Eli Wallach will return to Broadway this winter in Jeremy Sams' adaptation of Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt's Nazi drama, The Visitor. The play will be directed by Sir Peter Hall, whose most recent Broadway credit was the lauded revival of Oscar Wilde's An Ideal Husband. The Visitor will begin previews Feb. 18, 1999, at the Barrymore Theatre, for a Mar. 11, 1999 opening. Rehearsals begin Jan. 11, 1999.
The production is being produced by the Shubert Organization. The Shuberts were not available for comment, but a spokesperson at McCorkle Casting Ltd., which is casting the show, confirmed The Visitor 's upcoming visit. Wallach's agent Clifford Stevens cautioned that Wallach was still in discussions about the project. He added, however, that the actor's involvement was likely.
Wallach will play famed Father of Psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud. In the drama, Nazi officers try to persuade Freud to sign a document endorsing the Nazi party.
Wallach last appeared on the New York stage in the still-running Off Broadway hit Visiting Mr. Green. Other credits from his long career include Cafe Crown, Rhinoceros, and This Property Is Condemned.
Sir Peter has frequently visited New York to stage such plays as The Merchant of Venice, Orpheus Descending and Four Baboons Adoring the Sun. During his crowded career, he has headed both the Royal Shakespeare Company (1960-68) and the Royal National Theatre (1963-88). For the last decade, he has produced plays under the flag of his own Peter Hall Company. The Barrymore's current tenant, Electra, begins previews Oct. 19 for an 8-week run through Jan. 10, 1999.
-- By Robert Simonson