Noth, Pine Will Star in Geffen Farragut North, Replacing Nightmare Musical

News   Noth, Pine Will Star in Geffen Farragut North, Replacing Nightmare Musical
The Geffen Playhouse is replacing its previously announced production of the musical Nightmare Alley, the final show of the 2008-09 season, and replacing it with Beau Willimon's political play Farragut North.

The Willimon play, directed by Tony Award winner Doug Hughes (Doubt), will feature Chris Noth (repeating the work he did in the play's Off-Broadway run) and Chris Pine. Noth is best known for his longtime stint as Detective Mike Logan on "Law & Order" and as Mr. Big on "Sex and the City." Pine stars as the young Captain Kirk in the upcoming Paramount film "Star Trek."

The Geffen Playhouse production of Farragut North marks the West Coast premiere and second production of Willimon's new play. Hughes also directed it in New York City.

Geffen producing director Gil Cates said in a statement, "…Due to the economic climate, we knew we needed to make the fiscally responsible choice regarding the costs of producing a full-scale world premiere musical. And second, we were given a timely opportunity to do a second production of a new play that came with a great director and wonderful actors.

"We will present Nightmare Alley as soon as we've had the opportunity to secure additional funding. In the meantime, this change is a win-win for the theatre and our audience."

Nightmare Alley, with book, music and lyrics by Jonathan Brielle, based on the William Lindsay Gresham novel and the subsequent cult-classic film, was to be directed by Cates. The show was previously billed this way by Geffen: "Nightmare Alley explores the darker side of entertainment by taking us into the world of carnies, cons and clairvoyants. With a score as wild as a funhouse and as emotionally evocative as a beautiful tightrope walker, this new musical tells the story of shocks that await you inside the big tent. …Nightmare Alley is a night at the theatre full of special effects, wondrous feats and enough spirit to make believers of us all." Farragut North will run June 18-July 26 on the Geffen Playhouse main stage, with the official opening night on June 24.

According to Geffen, "Set against the backdrop of a close presidential race, Stephen (Chris Pine) is a young press secretary working for a fast-rising candidate. With confidence and power beyond his years, Stephen is convinced he and seasoned campaign manager, Paul (Chris Noth), can steer this team into the west wing without breaking a sweat. But before the polls close at the primaries, Stephen's perceived invincibility is shattered as he falls prey to backroom politics and the manipulations of veteran operatives. With quick-witted banter and an inside look into the world of politics, Farragut North is a timely tale of hubris, loyalty and the lust for power."

Farragut North is a 2007 recipient of an Edgerton Foundation grant for New American Plays.

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