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James Earl Jones and Vanessa Redgrave to star in 'Driving Miss Daisy' on Broadway

June 29, 2010 |  1:00 pm

Jones Putting the stars and the vehicle in "star vehicle," actors James Earl Jones and Vanessa Redgrave are set to perform in a Broadway production of "Driving Miss Daisy," scheduled to open Oct. 25 at the John Golden Theatre.

The production, which will be directed by David Esbjornson, marks the first time that Alfred Uhry's Pulitzer Prize-winning 1987 play will receive a Broadway staging. The Southern drama was originally produced at the off-Broadway Playwrights Horizons, starring Morgan Freeman and Dana Ivey, and has since been staged all over the world.

The 1989 film adaptation, which featured Freeman and Jessica Tandy, won four Academy Awards, including best picture and actress. Uhry also won an Oscar for adapting his play.

Set in 1950s Georgia, "Driving Miss Daisy" tells the story of an elderly Jewish widow (Redgrave) who, after getting into a car accident, grudgingly agrees to be driven by a chauffeur (Jones). Over the years, the distant relationship between employer and employee grows into a kind of friendship.

The Broadway staging is being produced by Jed Bernstein and Adam Zotovich, and will begin previews on Oct. 7. No further casting has been announced.

Jones won Tony Awards for his performances in "Fences" in 1987 and "The Great White Hope" in 1969. He most recently appearing on Broadway in a revival of "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" in 2008.

Redgrave won a Tony in 2003 for the revival of "Long Day's Journey Into Night" and recently performed in the 2007 solo show based on Joan Didion's book "The Year of Magical Thinking."

-- David Ng

Photo: James Earl Jones. Credit: Stefano Paltera / For The Times