Sunday, June 16, 2024

Exclusive: Broadway Great Frank Langella will Direct and Co-Star with Ageless Hot-as-a-Pistol Elaine May in “Love Letters” Off Broadway


No one is more “in” right now than Elaine May. At age 87, she’s just won a Tony Award for “The Waverly Gallery,” she’s loaded up on accolades including a lifetime achievement award this weekend from the LA Film Critics. (She sent a two sentence statement: “Thank you for my lifetime achievement award. I look forward to many more.”)

Now I’m told that May will team with a Broadway legend, Frank Langella, for an off Broadway run of A. R. Gurney’s “Love Letters.” Langella is directing. A formal announcement is forthcoming. I hear that rehearsals have already started and tickets will go on sale maybe this week for a start date in early March after the present production, “Paradise Lost” closes February 23rd.

The venue will be the tiny, 199 seat Acorn Theater on West 42nd St. I’m imagining the lines in front of the Acorn of very squirrely people going nuts trying to get inside.

“Love Letters” has had many incarnations on and off Broadway and around the world. Producers lost money on the last Broadway run in 2014, with Mia Farrow and Brian Dennehy, Candice Bergen, and Carol Burnett all rotating in and out.

But a small theater with these two superstars should be a hit. Not only is Elaine Most Wanted, Langella hasn’t been on stage since a short run in 2016 with “The Father” at Manhattan Theater Club. Can’t wait!

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
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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