With Faith Prince happily ensconced as Mrs. Anna Leonowens in the Tony winning The King and I revival, speculation has begun as to who will step in for co-star Lou Diamond Phillips when he leaves the show, either for good or to take a summer movie role. The New York Post reported (April 21) that the role of the King of Siam will go to Dean Cain, who plays Clark Kent/Superman on TV's "Lois & Clark."
Production spokesperson Susanne Tighe said that the Post's raising Cain was "just a rumor. Lou hasn't even announced his own plans at this point."
Gail Leibowitz of United Talent International, representing Cain, denied the rumor positing Cain as King, saying "it could not be more wrong."
The Post reported that 31-year-old Cain is already learning his lines and is debating whether to let his head be shaved for the royal role.
Yul Brynner made the role of the King legendary on stage and screen. Originated by Gertrude Lawrence in 1951, the role of the English schoolteacher in 1860s Siam calls on Anna to sing "I Whistle a Happy Tune," "Getting To Know You," "Hello Young Lovers" "Shall We Dance," and other Rodgers and Hammerstein perennials. In the current revival, Tony winner Prince (Guys & Dolls) took over for Donna Murphy March 22. --By David Lefkowitz