Howard Sackler's The Great White Hope Given Reading With Rapper Common
05 Mar 2014
Howard Sackler's Tony and Pulitzer Prize-winning play The Great White Hope was recently given an industry reading starring rapper Common, according to the New York Post.
Common, formerly Lonnie Rashid Lynn, Jr., played African-American boxing champion Jack Jefferson, the role that earned James Earl Jones a 1969 Tony Award and a 1971 Oscar nomination in the subsequent film version.
The reading was held for producers and investors, and Common has offered to help finance a possible production.
The play, about an African-American boxer — loosely based on Jack Johnson — who suffers racism due to his success and his relationship with a white woman, opened on Broadway in October 1968.
Holed up in a seedy motel on the edge of the Mojave Desert, two former lovers unpack the deep secrets and dark desires of their tangled relationship, passionately tearing each other apart. Led by director Daniel Aukin (Back Back Back at MTC, 4,000 Miles), Tony winner Nina Arianda (Venus in Fur at MTC, Born Yesterday) and Sam Rockwell (A Behanding in Spokane, The Way Way Back) bring an explosive intensity to Sam Shepard’s (Buried Child, True West) landmark myth of the new Wild West.