Orphans was originally scheduled to begin March 19 (with an opening April 7) but was postponed following the announcement that Ben Foster would replace Shia LaBeouf — who departed the company "due to creative differences" — in the role of Treat. ( Read more about LaBeouf's departure here.)
In the play, according to press notes, "two orphaned brothers are living in a decrepit North Philadelphia row house. Treat (Foster), the eldest, supports his damaged younger sibling Phillip (Sturridge) by petty thievery, and makes the house a virtual prison for the seemingly simple-minded Phillip. One night he kidnaps a rich older man, Harold (Baldwin), who turns out to have his own motives and becomes the father figure the boys have always yearned for." Orphans premiered in 1983 at The Matrix Theatre in Los Angeles where it won the Drama-Logue Award. Following its 1985 engagement at Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre, the play had a successful run at New York’s Westside Arts Theatre and was subsequently produced in London. A film version was also produced.
The creative team includes scenic designer John Lee Beatty, costume designer Jess Goldstein, lighting designer Pat Collins and sound designer Peter Fitzgerald with fight direction by Thomas Schall, original music by Tom Kitt and dialect coaching by Deborah Hecht.
The play is performed in two acts with one 15-minute intermission.
Understudies are Jonathan Gordon, Bruce McCarty and Jeff Ward.
Sturridge's films include "Being Julia," "Vanity Fair," "On the Road," "Like Minds," "The Boat That Rocked," "Junkhearts" and the forthcoming "Effie" and Terrence Malick's new feature. He made his theatre debut in Simon Stephens' Punk Rock at the Lyric Hammersmith in London and at the Manchester Royal Exchange. He subsequently received the Critics' Circle Best Newcomer Award in recognition of his leading performance, along with Best Newcomer at the Manchester Evening News Theatre Awards. He was also nominated for the Milton Schulman Award for Outstanding Newcomer at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards and London Newcomer of the Year at the Whatsonstage Awards. He has since played leading roles at London's Royal Court Theatre, in Simon Stephens' play Wastwater and most recently in Polly Stenham's new play No Quarter.
Baldwin was nominated for a Tony Award in 1992 for his performance in A Streetcar Named Desire. He has also been seen on Broadway in Loot, Serious Money and Twentieth Century. Baldwin received an Academy Award nomination for "The Cooler" and won two Emmy Awards for his work on NBC's "30 Rock." He appeared in the film adaptation of Rock of Ages.
Foster's two Sundance Films, "Ain't Them Body Saints" and "Kill Your Darlings," will be released later this year by IFC Films and Sony Pictures Classics, respectively. His screen credits also include "The Messenger," "3:10 to Yuma," "360," "Contraband," "Here" and "The Mechanic," among others.
Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre is located at 236 West 45th Street. Tickets can be purchased by calling Telecharge at (212) 239-6200 or online by visiting Telecharge.com.