The New York Post reports that the Tony Awards Administration Committee will meet Jan. 20 to discuss whether actors who replace other performers in Broadway shows should be eligible to win a Tony for their work. A member of the Tony rules committee told the New York daily, "It's being talked about with a certain amount of good spirit. I just hope it doesn't get bogged down by the question of, 'How on earth do we do it?'" Tony rules now state that only actors who are in the opening-night cast of a show are eligible to win a Tony Award.
The Post says three possibilities are currently being considered to recognize replacement cast members: creating a Best Cast Replacement category where actors would be selected by the Tony nominating committee; giving a special Tony Award each season to one significant cast replacement; or allowing replacement actors to be eligible in existing Tony categories.
Among the high-profile replacements now on the boards include the aforementioned Fierstein in Fiddler, Brooke Shields in Wonderful Town, comic Bruce Vilanch in Hairspray, Carolee Carmello in Mamma Mia! and Richard Kind in The Producers.