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Farragut Northand Country Girl to arriveon Broadway in 2008, directed by Mike Nichols


The New York post reports that director Mike Nichols is to bring two plays to Broadway in 2008: Beau Willimon's political drama Farragut North, in which it is said Jake Gyllenhaal will make his Broadway debut, and a revival of Clifford Odets' A Country Girl .

The paper had earlier reported that a 'hush-hush' reading of Beau Willimon's Farragut North took place early in June this year, in which Gyllenhaal played the role of "a young, idealistic communications director who works for an inspiring, though unorthodox, presidential candidate. During the campaign, his career is done in by more seasoned politicos who thrive on poisonous partisan politics, dirty tricks and back-stabbing."

The reading also featured Mark Blum, Denis O'Hare, Jessica Hecht and Alison Pill, and was directed by James Lapine who has now dropped out of the project.

Through initially rumured to arrive on Broadway in the Fall of 2007, the play is now tipped "to open on Broadway in the midst of the presidential election next fall."

The New York Post reports that "Nichols has quietly wrested that one (Farragut North) away from Second Stage," the off-Broadway company that had announced it was to present the play has part of its 2007 - 08 season.

Farragut North's author, Beau Willimon, is no stranger to political shenanigan's, having worked for Dean's 2004 presidential race, Chuck Schumer's 1998 U.S. Senate race, Hillary Clinton's 2000 Senate race, and Bill Bradley's 2000 presidential bid. His new play is said to be "loosely based on Howard Dean's 2004 campaign for the White House."

The second play Mike Nichols is reportedly to be directing on Broadway in 2008 is a revival of Clifford Odets' A Country Girl, which last played on Broadway in 1972.

The paper reports that "Morgan Freeman looks set to play Frank Elgin, the washed-up alcoholic actor trying to make a comeback in a new Broadway play, while Oscar winner Frances McDormand is in talks to play his long-suffering wife, Georgie."

The article also reports that the role of the hot-shot young director Bernie Dodd, was nearly offered to Tony Shalhoub, but Nichols has decided he wants a sexier younger actor.

Mike Nichols has won seven Tony Awards for directing 'Barefoot in the Park' (1963), The Odd Couple' (1965), 'Luv' (1965), Plaza Suite (1968), The Prisoner of Second Avenue (1972), The Real Thing (1984) and 'Spamalot' (2005). He won a 1968 Academy Award for Best Director for 'The Graduate', and has won two Emmy's for directing 'Wit' and 'Angels in America.'

    Mike Nichols  Jake Gyllenhaal

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