Broadway is poised to be saying "Here's to you, Mrs. Robinson," as the stage version of Mike Nichols' classic 1967 film comedy strives to reach Broadway this spring. Weeks ago, a spokesperson for actress Kathleen Turner at Rogers and Cowen confirmed on Aug. 22 long-held rumors that the actress was negotiating to repeat her much-ballyhooed London turn as seductress Mrs. Robinson. Production spokespersons now confirm that Turner is a definite.
Syndicated newspaper columnist Cindy Adams quoted Turner Sept. 7 as saying, "We start rehearsals in December, open March, and I'm in at least through next Labor Day," but the press office can confirm only the springtime launch.
Still no word on who will play Benjamin, the role that launched Dustin Hoffman into film stardom, but both the New York Post and New York Times have reported that Alicia Silverstone, of "Clueless" fame, is in talks to play Elaine, Ben's girlfriend and Mrs. Robinson's naive daughter (played on film by Katherine Ross). A spokesperson told Playbill On-Line the actress was "in negotiations" for the role.
The Graduate is written by Terry Johnson, adapted from the original novel by Charles Webb and the motion picture screenplay by Calder Willingham and Buck Henry. Johnson also directs the London mounting, with sets by Rob Howell, lighting by Hugh Vanstone and sound by Mike Walker. The Graduate is produced in the West End (and on Broadway) by John Reid and Sacha Brooks. The show opened at the Gielgud April 5, 2000.
Appearing until Sept. 29, Hollywood actress Anne Archer is the latest UK Mrs. Robinson, following Turner, Jerry Hall and Amanda Donohoe. Linda Grey will follow Archer. The part was first made famous by Anne Bancroft . Turner originated the role in April 2000 and caused a sensation by dropping a towel and appearing naked, albeit briefly and in dim lighting. Turner's return to Broadway has been long awaited, since she was promised last season in a solo turn, Tallulah. The "Romancing the Stone," "Body Heat" and Indiscretions actress played the elegant, heavy-lidded Tallulah Bankhead in the show, which premiered in Chichester in 1997 and enjoyed a run at FL's Coconut Grove Theatre in 1999.