Spider-Man, Pause the Dark

While the synergies between Broadway and comic book properties seemed like a surefire win (has the HTML5 spec gotten to the /sarcasm tag yet?), news arrives that the production of Spider-Man, Turn off the Dark has been suspended due to financial issues. The issue being that the finances seem to have run out, though the producers, Hello Entertainment, claim this is only temporary.

Work had been going on to modify and renovate the Hilton Theatre in order to stage the show, which will be directed by Julie Taymor of “Lion King” fame. Music is being supplied by Bono and Edge, The, who when not writing Broadway musicals, front the band U2. To date, only Mary Jane (Evan Rachel Wood) and the Green Goblin (Alan Cumming) have been cast, leaving open to speculation who will be playing the title character.

The plot is said to mix elements of the comics and recent highly successful film series helmed by Sam Raimi, as well as adding in some original material- probably the parts where the characters spontaneously break out into song, which I don’t recall happening very often in either the films or the comics.

Comings and Goings on Broadway

The Longacre Theatre will play host to the Broadway production of “Burn the Floor,” staring Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Karina Smirnoff. It has been explained to me, slowly, that these individuals are notable because they are on a popular reality television program called Dancing With the Stars. They will appear in shows through August 16th in the production that is described as a “breathtaking blend of Latin and Ballroom dance.”

Dolly Parton

Dolly Parton

The Marquis Theatre’s production of 9 to 5 is closing this September 6th. There was no immediate reason given for closing the production, which accrued 15 Drama Desk Award and 4 Tony Award nominations, but all signs point to a lackluster performance at the box office. Based on the 1980 film of the same name, with music and lyrics by the film’s star and country music legend Dolly Parton, the musical version will have run 148 shows and 24 previews when its engagement at the Marquis ends.

Though the show’s Broadway run is ending, it will lunch a national tour in 2010. Dates have yet to be announced for the tour, but tickets will show up eventually. You can still catch the Broadway production all through August up to September 6th.

More Hollywood On Broadway

Broadway is betting on Hollywood again for another new production, this one featuring a far fewer number of fake American accents. A Broadway production of Donald Margulies play Time Stands Still is set to open January 2010 at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre and will feature the talents of Laura Linney and Alicia Silverstone.

Alicia Silverstone

Alicia Silverstone

Time Stands Still tells the story of a photojournalist (Linney) wounded in Iraq, who, upon returning home, has to learn to adjust once more to domestic life with her journalist husband. Silverstone plays the role of an older photo editor’s sunny younger girlfriend, a part she played in productions prior to the Broadway run as well. Linney has worked with Margulies’ material before, in 2004′s Sight Unseen.

Miss Silverstone hasn’t been on the big screen much recently, though I would forfeit my geek cred if I didn’t mention she played Batgirl in one of the 90′s era Bat-films. You know, the ones before Christopher Nolan rescued the franchise. The closest genre credit I can get with Laura Linney is a turn as female lead in one of the lesser known Michael Crichton film projects, Congo. I’ll admit I went to the movie theatre to see it, too.

Should you wish to go to the “legitimate theatre” and see Laura Linney, you can check for tickets when they become available here: Time Stands Still Tickets.

Anglo – Australian Chicago Cops On Broadway

PoliceCapNews broke today that Hugh Jackman and Daniel Craig would be staring a new Broadway production. “A Steady Rain” is, according to most accounts, about two Chicago cops dealing with the results of a particularly bad day. Digging a little deeper thanks to Google, I found this particular day involves a cannibal serial killer. Not sure how many of those you get in your average Broadway production. My guess is: “few.”

Though I could go with the “superheros on Broadway” angle, I’m more amused by the double dose of fake American accent. The leads are Australian and English after all. Granted, Jackman’s accent playing some guy named Logan was pretty flawless. I haven’t encountered Craig doing one yet, though working that into a James Bond film might be good for a laugh. I have confidence he’ll be able to pull it off convincingly.

Let’s just hope Arnold Schwarzenegger doesn’t end up being one of the understudys.

It’s a little soon, but tickets will probably show up right here at some point in the future.