The Heiress: Dan Stevens to make B'way debut

Dan Stevens, star of the Golden Globe-winning series “Downton Abbey,” will make his Broadway debut starring as 'Morris Townsend' in the upcoming revival of the Tony Award-winning play The Heiress.

Stevens joins the previously announced Academy Award nominee and Emmy Award winner David Strathairn (Dr. Austin Sloper) and Academy Award nominee Jessica Chastain (Catherine Sloper) - who is also making her Broadway debut.

Stevens is currently shooting season three of “Downton Abbey,” the Golden Globe-winning series written by Julian Fellowes, reprising the leading role of “Matthew Crawley.” On stage, Dan’s credits include the lead role of 'Septimus Hodge' in David Leveaux’s West End production of Tom Stoppard’s 'Arcadia,' and the 'Doctor' in Tom Stoppard and André Previn’s 'Every Good Boy Deserves Favour' at the National Theatre.

The actor said, “I couldn't ask for a more exciting Broadway debut: to work on such a fascinating play, with such fantastic actors as Jessica Chastain and David Strathairn and one of Broadway’s great directors, Moisés Kaufman. I can't wait to get started.”

Written by Ruth Goetz & Augustus Goetz, The Heiress will be directed by Tony Award nominated playwright and director Moisés Kaufman. Performances will begin Oct 2012 at a theatre to be announced.

The Heiress, adapted from the 1880 Henry James novel, "Washington Square," tells the story of 'Catherine Sloper' (Jessica Chastain), a young naive woman who falls for a handsome young man (Dan Stevens) who her emotionally abusive father (David Strathairn) suspects is a fortune hunter.

The revival will be produced by Paula Wagner, Roy Furman and Stephanie P. McClelland.

The 1947 Broadway premiere of The Heiress was directed by Jed Harris, and starred Wendy Hiller as 'Catherine Sloper,' Peter Cookson as 'Morris Townsend' and Basil Rathbone as 'Dr. Austin Sloper.'

The play has been revived on Broadway three times. The last revival was in 1995, directed by Gerald Gutierrez, it starred Cherry Jones as 'Catherine Sloper,' Jon Tenney as 'Morris Townsend' and 'Philip Bosco' as 'Dr. Austin Sloper.' The production was nominated for seven 1995 Tony Awards, and won four: Best Revival; Best Director (Gerald Gutierrez); Best Actress (Cherry Jones); and Best Featured Actress (Frances Sternhagen as 'Lavinia Penniman').

The 1949 Academy Award winning movie version was adapted from the play by the Goetzes, and was directed by William Wyler, starring Olivia de Havilland as 'Catherine Sloper,' Montgomery Clift as 'Morris Townsend' and Ralph Richardson as 'Dr. Austin Sloper.' Olivia de Havilland won the 1949 Academy Award for Best Actress, and the film was nominated for the 1949 Academy Award for Best Picture.

Dan Stevens