The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon welcomed two-time Tony nominee Jeremy Pope (Choir Boy, Ain't Too Proud) in his late night television show debut as the Broadway alum prepares to return to the stage in The Collaboration. While sitting down with Fallon, Pope revealed that his mother actually passed out in the audience as he made his Broadway debut in Choir Boy.
"My mom, who I love so dearly, my Broadway debut Choir Boy, she passed out during the middle of the show," Pope tells. "We hear kind of on the God mic from our stage manager, 'All actors exit the stage.' We do so. They tell us, you know, someone has passed out, they're okay." The show resumed and the cast, all making their Broadway debuts, came out at the end with signs—Pope's "brilliant idea"—saying "Hi Mom." Little did Pope know his mother wasn't in the audience, but in an ambulance outside the theatre. "She made it to the after party, so it's all good," Pope concludes. To hear the full story, check out the video above.
In The Collaboration, Pope stars opposite Paul Bettany (WandaVision, A Very British Scandal) with the two playing then-newcomer Jean-Michel Basquiat and superstar artist Andy Warhol, respectively. The work follows the two artists as they begin an unlikely collaboration on a modern art exhibition in 1984 New York. Transferring to Broadway with the production from its world premiere at London's Young Vic, Pope and Bettany have also reprised their roles for an upcoming film adaptation. "I love Paul so much, and it's just been, you know, a once-in-a-lifetime experience to do it in three different iterations and it keeps evolving, it keeps evolving," Pope says.
Previews for The Collaboration will begin November 29 at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre ahead of a December 20 opening night. Written by four-time Oscar nominee McCarten (The Two Popes, Bohemian Rhapsody), The Collaboration will be directed by Kwame Kwei-Armah (The Visitor, Tree), who also directed the London premiere. The Broadway run will also star Krysta Rodriguez (Into the Woods, Spring Awakening) and Erik Jensen (The Exonerated, Coal Country).
Pope also shares in the interview a story about the cast of Ain't Too Proud — The Life and Times of The Temptations suffering allergy attacks on opening night, blacking out at the Tony Awards, and shares insights into the making of his latest film The Inspection.