By Matthew Blank
03 Jul 2013
The celebrated Broadway premiere of Nora Ephron's Lucky Guy, starring Academy Award winner Tom Hanks as late Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Mike McAlary, ends its extended Broadway run July 3 at the Broadhurst Theatre.
Tony Award-winning director George C. Wolfe staged the production that began previews March 1 and officially opened April 1. The limited engagement was extended to July 3. Hanks made his Broadway debut as McAlary in a production that traces the tenacious reporter's turbulent rise to success in gritty 1980's New York City.
The production recouped its $3.6 million capitalization after eight weeks of performances. Lucky Guy consistently grossed over $1 million at the box office weekly. There have been reports of a 2014 London engagement with Hanks reprising his role; however, representatives for the production have not confirmed the news.
Lucky Guy received six Tony Award nominations, including Best Play, Best Actor (Hanks), Best Featured Actor (Courtney B. Vance), Best Direction (Wolfe), Best Scenic Design (David Rockwell) and Best Lighting Design (Jules Fisher & Peggy Eisenhauer). The play took home Tony honors for Vance and Fisher and Eisenhauer.
Ephron, the acclaimed writer-director known for the screenplays to "Sleepless in Seattle," "When Harry Met Sally" and "Heartburn," died at the age of 71 on June 26, 2012. She had been at work on the new play about McAlary, who was a columnist for the New York Post and the Daily News. Ephron worked for the New York Post early in her career and wrote about the experience in her final book, "I Remember Nothing."
The cast of Lucky Guy also features Maura Tierney ("News Radio," "The Good Wife") as McAlary's wife Alice, and Tony Award winner Courtney B. Vance (Fences, Six Degrees of Separation) as McAlary's editor, Hap Hairston.
Completing the cast are Peter Scolari (Sly Fox, Hairspray) as columnist Michael Daly, Richard Masur ("Risky Business," "And the Band Played On") as editor Jerry Nachman/editor Stanley Joyce, Brian Dykstra (Red, Selling Out) as policeman Brian O'Regan, Christopher McDonald ("Thelma and Louise," Chicago) as lawyer Eddie Hayes, Peter Gerety ("Flight," "The Good Wife") as editor John Cotter, Michael Gaston (A Day in the Death of Joe Egg, "Mad Men") as columnist Jim Dwyer, newcomer Dustyn Gulledge as Dino Tortoricci, Deirdre Lovejoy ("The Wire," How I Learned to Drive) as reporter Louise Imerman/editor Debbie Krenek, Danny Mastrogiorgio (Golden Boy, Contact) as reporter Bob Drury, Stephen Tyrone Williams (Burning, My Children! My Africa!) as Abner Louima, as well as Paula Jon De Rose, Joe Forbrich, Tom Hammond and Marc Damon Johnson.
Lucky Guy is characterized as "a new play about the scandal- and graffiti-ridden New York of the 1980s, as told through the story of the charismatic and controversial tabloid columnist Mike McAlary. From his sensational reporting of New York’s major police corruption to the libel suit that nearly ended his career, the play dramatizes the story of McAlary's meteoric rise, fall and rise again, ending with his coverage of the Abner Louima case for which he won the Pulitzer Prize, shortly before his untimely death on Christmas Day, 1998."
Lucky Guy has scenic design by David Rockwell, costume design by Toni-Leslie James, sound design by Scott Lehrer, and lighting design by Jules Fisher and Peggy Eisenhauer. Projection design is by batwin + robin productions.
Hanks' numerous screen appearances include "Sleepless in Seattle," "Philadelphia," "Forrest Gump," "Cast Away," "Saving Private Ryan," "That Thing You Do" and "Cloud Atlas."
The Broadway production is produced by Colin Callender, Roy Furman, Arielle Tepper Madover, Roger & William Berlind, Stacey Mindich, Robert Cole & Frederick Zollo, David Mirvish, Daryl Roth, James D. Stern/Douglas L. Meyer, Scott & Brian Zeilinger, in association with Sonia Friedman Productions and The Shubert Organization.