Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Broadway Tony Award Chess Game: “Network” With Bryan Cranston’s Sizzling Performance Extends til Next April, Goes Against “To Kill a Mockingbird”

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This does not come as a surprise.

“Network,” with Bryan Cranston’s sizzling star performance, has extended its run on Broadway through next April 28th, which also happens to be the deadline for Tony Award eligibility.

Cranston should get the Tony, but he will be in a tight race with Jeff Daniels, who opens tomorrow night in “To Kill a Mockingbird.” Daniels also gives helluva performance, if not quite as electric. It’s a quieter turn, but just as powerful.

The Tony Award race for Best Actor in a Play has thus become a chess game among producers. What fun!

Both plays are must-see, with lots of supporting performances, too worthy of awards. What’s even more interesting is that both plays can win. “Network” is adapted from its movie, but it’s never been a stage play. “Mockingbird” would appear to be a revival, as it’s been produced before. So they could each win unless producer Scott Rudin insists that Aaron Sorkin’s reworked take on Harper Lee’s material is new. Then we’ll have a quite a fight on our hands!

And that’s what will likely happen. Even though it’s Harper Lee’s characters and plot, “Mockingbird” is listed as a play by Sorkin.

So who will outspend to win the Tony?

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedmanhttps://www.showbiz411.com
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.
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