Jason Alexander's possible casting in the Los Angeles production of The Producers has been mentioned in the press before, and now it's in the news once again. The "Seinfeld" star told Variety April 24 that he was in discussions to take on the role of Max Bialystock in the April-December 2003 Pantages Theatre engagement in Los Angeles.
No specific date or cast has been announced for the engagement, which represents a long sitdown for the same company that begins in Pittsburgh in September 2002. The producers of The Producers, the smash Broadway musical comedy by Mel Brooks and Thomas Meehan, originally sought the 2,100-seat Ahmanson Theatre in L.A. but opted for the larger 2,700-seat Pantages. The Lion King closes at the Pantages in December.
The musical is part of Broadway-L.A.'s 2002-2003 season and the Center Theatre Group/Ahmanson Theatre 2002-2003 season. Single tickets for the L.A. run are not yet available, but groups of 20 or more tickets can now "place priority orders" at (323) 463-4367.
Alexander's name has often been joined with that of Martin Short, as a possible L.A. Leo Bloom.
Alexander starred on Broadway in Merrily We Roll Along, The Rink, Broadway Bound, Accomplice and Jerome Robbins' Broadway. He also starred in a television musical, "Bye Bye Birdie." Cast members expected to kick off the tour that will land in Los Angeles include Lee Roy Reams (Roger De Bris), Jim Walton (Leo) and Lewis J. Stadlen, although they have not been announced or confirmed publicly. In theory, those leads would leap-frog to a second tour that begins in July 2003 in Boston while "marquee names" sit down in L.A. Because negotiations and plans are still being formed, speculation about casting is rampant in the theatre community.