Forest Whitaker to Make His Broadway Debut in 'Hughie'

August 22, 2015











New York, NY) – Academy Award® winner, Golden Globe Award® winner & BAFTA winner Forest Whitaker will make his highly anticipated Broadway debut in HUGHIE, by four-time Pulitzer Prize winner and Nobel Prize Laureate Eugene O’Neill. Directed by Tony Award® winner and Olivier Award® winner Michael Grandage, HUGHIE will play a strictly limited engagement in the spring of 2016 on Broadway at a Shubert Theatre to be announced.

Darren Bagert, Michael Grandage Company and the Shubert Organization will present HUGHIE on Broadway.

Michael Grandage reunites with the entire creative team from his Tony Award® winning production of Red including Tony Award® winner Christopher Oram (Sets & Costumes), Tony Award® winner Neil Austin (Lights) and Tony Award® winner Adam Cork (Sound). Each designer received a Tony Award®for their work on the production of Red.

Additional casting will be announced soon. 101 Productions, Ltd. serve as Executive Producers.

The New York Times says “Eugene O’Neill is America’s greatest playwright.” “Hughie is a full and rich evening of theater” and Time Magazine says “O'Neill is the greatest master of theater the U.S. has ever produced.”

The New York Times says “Forest Whitaker is a magnetic actor” and the Chicago Tribune says “Forest Whitaker is one of the best actors of our generation.” CBS says “Whitaker doesn't so much play roles as inhabit them” and Variety calls Whitaker “an acting force.”

The New York Times says “Michael Grandage has been responsible for some of the most emotionally engaging shows on stage (Red, Frost/Nixon, the Jude Law Hamlet). He is a craftsman of the theater, and he makes sure that the play’s intellectual arguments are sensually grounded.”

Hughie is set in the lobby of a small midtown hotel on the West Side of Manhattan. Whitaker plays Erie Smith, a drunken, small time hustler who is mourning the recent death of the hotel’s night clerk, Hughie. Erie regales the new night clerk with tall-tales of his glory days and times spent with Hughie. It premiered on Broadway in 1964 with Jason Robards in the role of “Erie” Smith. The role of Hughie has been played by illustrious actors such as Burgess Meredith, Ben Gazzara and Al Pacino.

Forest Whitaker (Erie Smith) is an actor, producer and director who has won an Academy Award, Golden Globe Award and BATA for his portrayal of Dictator Idi Amin in Taylor Hackford’s The Last King of Scotland, and has appeared in over fifty films that have collectively grossed over $2 billion. Whitaker studied opera and drama in college and his first big-screen break-out performance was in Amy Heckerling’s Fast Times at Ridgemont High. Over the next thirty years he worked with the greatest directors of our time, appearing in critically acclaimed films that include Oliver Stone’s Platoon, Clint Eastwood’s Bird ( for which Whitaker won the Best Actor Award at Cannes), Martin Scorsese’s The Color of Money (opposite Paul Newman), Robert Altman’s Ready to Wear, Wayne Wang’s Smoke, Barry Levinson’s Good Morning Vietnam, Neil Jordan’s The Crying Game, Jim Jarmusch’s Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai, David Fincher's Panic Room, Spike Jonze’s Where The Wild Things Are, Denzel Washington’s The Great Debaters, and Lee Daniels’ The Butler. As a director, Mr. Whitaker’s work includes HBO’s Strapped, Waiting to Exhale, Hope Floats, and First Daughter. Most recently Mr. Whitaker won critical acclaim for his performance in Antoine Fuqua’s Southpaw, with upcoming film projects that include Star Wars: Rogue One.

Michael Grandage is a multi-award winning director and producer. His recent Broadway credits include Red (Tony Award winner and Drama Desk Award winner for Best Director), The Cripple of Inishmaan, Frost/Nixon, Hamlet with Jude Law and Evita. Mr. Grandage will direct Nicole Kidman in the West End this fall in the U.K. premiere of the new play Photograph 51, by Anna Ziegler. He was artistic director of London’s Donmar Warehouse from 2002-2012, where his work included Richard II, Luise Miller, Red, King Lear, Jude Law in Hamlet (also Elsinore and New York), Ivanov (Evening Standard and Critics Circle Award Best Director), Madame de Sade, Twelfth Night, The Chalk Garden (Evening Standard and Critics Circle Awards Best Director), Don Juan in Soho, Frost/Nixon (also Gielgud, New York, USA tour, Tony Nomination Award for Best Director), Othello (Evening Standard and Critic's Circle Awards for Best Director), The Wild Duck (Critic's Circle Award Best Director), Guys and Dolls (Olivier Award for Outstanding Musical Production), Grand Hotel (Olivier Award for Outstanding Musical Production and Evening Standard Award Best Director), The Cut, After Miss Julie, Caligula (Olivier Award Best Director), Merrily We Roll Along (Evening Standard Award Best Director), Passion Play (Evening Standard Award and Critics Circle Award for Best Director). For Sheffield Theatres he directed many productions including Don Carlos (Evening Standard Award Best Director). He has been awarded Honorary Doctorates by both Sheffield University and Sheffield Hallam University and is President of Central School of Speech and Drama. He was appointed CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours 2011. His book A Decade At The Donmar, was published by Constable & Robins in 2012. Michael Grandage Company

Eugene O'Neill (Playwright). Born in New York City on October 16, 1888, he was the first great American playwright. Beyond the Horizon (1920) won a Pulitzer Prize (he eventually won four), and in 1936 he became the only American playwright ever awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. His major works include The Emperor Jones (1920); The Hairy Ape (1922); Desire Under the Elms (1924); The Great God Brown (1926); Strange Interlude (1928); Mourning Becomes Electra (1931); Ah, Wilderness! (1933); A Moon for the Misbegotten (1947); Hughie (1964); A Touch of the Poet (1958), The Iceman Cometh (1939) and Long Day's Journey Into Night, completed in 1941 but unproduced until three years after his death on November 27, 1953.


Ticket & performance information will be announced shortly.


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