Joe Mantello would direct the production, which would reunite the stars of The Producers. The venture would likely be a limited run. Emanuel Azenberg, the veteran showman long associated with Simon, will be lead producer.
"We are amicably negotiating with Nathan and Matthew and Joe Mantello," Azenberg told Playbill On-Line. Broderick is currently performing Off-Broadway in The Foreigner. Lane is reprising his role of Max Bialystock in the London premiere of The Producers. Once their runs are done, the two will begin work on the film version of The Producers.
No theatre has been mentioned for the mounting.
Joe Mantello, the hot Broadway director of the moment, has won Tony Awards for his work on Assassins and Take Me Out.
Lane and Broderick would play Oscar Madison and Felix Unger in Simon's classic The Odd Couple. Lane would be the sloppy sportswriter Madison, while Broderick would be the uptight photographer Felix Unger (the twosome might also switch roles at some performances, it has been reported). In addition to his Tony-winning roles in The Producers and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Nathan Lane has starred on The Great White Way in Present Laughter, Merlin, The Wind in the Willows, Some Americans Abroad, On Borrowed Time, Guys and Dolls, Laughter on the 23rd Floor, Love! Valour! Compassion! and The Man Who Came to Dinner.
Matthew Broderick received Tony Awards for his performances in Brighton Beach Memoirs and the revival of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. He was also Tony-nominated for his work in The Producers, and his other theatre credits include Biloxi Blues, Night Must Fall, Taller Than a Dwarf, On Valentine's Day, Torch Song Trilogy and The Widow Claire.
The original Broadway production of The Odd Couple opened at Broadway's Plymouth Theatre in March 1965. Art Carney and Walter Matthau starred as, respectively, Felix and Oscar. The production won four 1965 Tonys, including awards for Matthau (Actor), Simon (Author), Mike Nichols (Director) and Oliver Smith (Scenic Designer). Matthau then repeated his role on film opposite the Felix of Jack Lemmon. The long-running TV version of Simon's work featured Jack Klugman (Oscar) and Tony Randall (Felix).