An Oscar Winner Chooses an O'Neill Classic for His Broadway Debut! | Playbill

News An Oscar Winner Chooses an O'Neill Classic for His Broadway Debut! Academy and Golden Globe Award winner Forest Whitaker, who starred in such critically acclaimed films as “The Butler” and “The Last King of Scotland,” will make his Broadway debut in a revival of Eugene O’Neill's Hughie.

Helmed by Tony winner Michael Grandage, the two-hander Hughie is set to play at a Shubert Organization theatre to be announced in spring 2016. Casting for the show's other role, a night clerk, will be announced soon.

Forest Whitaker
Forest Whitaker

Grandage, who has also directed Evita, Frost/Nixon and 2014's The Cripple of Inishmaan on Broadway, reunites his entire creative team from the 2010 Broadway production of Red. This includes Tony-winning set and costume designer Christopher Oram, Tony-winning lighting designer Neil Austin and Tony-winning sound designer Adam Cork

Hughie premiered on Broadway in 1964 (with Jason Robards Jr.) and was last revived in 1996 (with Al Pacino). It is four-time Pulitzer Prize winner O’Neill's play about drunken, small-time hustler Erie Smith, who is mourning the death of a small Manhattan hotel’s night clerk, Hughie. Whitaker will play the role of Erie, which has also been performed by such acclaimed actors as Burgess Meredith and Ben Gazzara. O'Neill is the only American playwright to win the Nobel Prize for literature.

Multi-award winner Whitaker has appeared in more than 50 films and worked with some of cinema’s most respected directors including Martin Scorsese, Clint Eastwood, Spike Jonze and many more. He will next appear on the big screen in the anticipated “Star Wars: Rogue One.” 

Though Whitaker is known primarily as a film actor, he studied opera at the University of Southern California in the early 1980s and was later accepted into the school's Drama Conservatory.

Darren Bagert, Michael Grandage Company and the Shubert Organization will present Hughie on Broadway.

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