How Broadway's original 'God of Carnage' cast came together for L.A.
When "God of Carnage" opened in New York in 2009, it featured one of the starriest casts in recent Broadway history -- Jeff Daniels, Hope Davis, James Gandolfini and Marcia Gay Harden. Starting April 5, the same actors will reprise their roles when Yasmina Reza's dark comedy begins performances at the Ahmanson Theatre. (The production officially opens April 13 and runs through May 15.)
Reuniting the cast for L.A. proved to be a challenge, according to interviews with cast members, their managers and producers. Not only did the actors have to juggle their various screen projects, but they also had to rearrange their personal lives since none of them lives in L.A. (Davis, Gandolfini and Harden live in New York, and Daniels lives in Michigan.)
"Carnage," translated from the French by Christopher Hampton, tells the story of two sets of bobo Brooklyn parents who come together after their sons are involved in a playground skirmish. Initially, the couples project a sense of politesse and fairness, but their goodwill soon descends into a round of childish name-calling and other less dignified forms of behavior.
The comedy won Tony Awards for play, actress (Harden) and direction (Matthew Warchus). All four of the actors received Tony nominations. The L.A. production will be a virtually identical staging to the version that ran in New York for more than 450 regular performances at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre.
Read the full story on the "Carnage" reunion in Sunday's Arts & Books section or click here.
-- David Ng
Photos: (Top) Marcia Gay Harden and James Gandolfini, and (bottom) Jeff Daniels and Hope Davis in "God of Carnage." Credit: Joan Marcus