Home Uncategorized Broadway Exclusive: Moss Hart’s Famous “Act One” Headed to Lincoln Center

This is exciting news if you are older or wiser: famed playwright Moss Hart’s beloved memoir, “Act One,” is being turned into a play. And that play is coming to Lincoln Center next spring thanks to the great James Lapine. He’s adapted the book and will direct the production.

Trust me, this story will get three hits among readers younger than 50. But Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman wrote the most wonderful plays ever including “You Can’t Take it With You” and “The Man Who Came to Dinner.” He and Kaufman also wrote the screenplays for “A Star is Born” (with Judy Garland), “Gentleman’s Agreement,” “Hans Christian Anderson,” and “Winged Victory.” You know, real movies.

Moss Hart was married to the late Kitty Carlisle Hart, who became a New York icon in her own right and carried on his legacy for years and years after he died in 1961 at the much too young age of 57.

Lapine and casting director Daniel Swee are looking for someone great to play Moss, a guy in his mid 20s with a New York Jewish sensibility.

The show comes off a two performance workshop tryout last month on Martha’s Vineyard featuring Tony Shalhoub, Debra Monk, Chuck Cooper and David Turner.

Anyway, the weird thing is I recently found a first edition of “Act One” and put it away for safekeeping. Now I’m going to dust it off for a re-read ASAP.

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3 replies to this post
  1. I read Act One soon after it was first published. I was in high school at the time. I loved it the book. A few years later, in the early 1960s, a movie version was released starring George Hamilton and Jason Robards and written and directed by Dore Schary. To be honest, I don’t remember if I saw it, but I do recall it got bad reviews and failed at the box office. Why would anyone want to dramatize that wonderful book a second time? I know that I would prefer re-read it than to pay $100 to see it on stage, even if James Lapine is involved.

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