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Theater

Olivia Wilde to lead 1984 on Broadway

Tom Sturridge and Reed Birney will also join her in the stage adaptation of George Orwell’s seminal dystopian novel

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Paul Morigi/Getty Images; Jeff Spicer/Getty Images

Tom Sturridge, Olivia Wilde, and Reed Birney have been tapped to headline the cast of the forthcoming Broadway premiere of 1984, George Orwell’s seminal dystopian novel which is currently experiencing an unexpected popularity bump in the zeitgeist more than 60 years after its publication.

The play, first adapted and directed by Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan in the U.K., will begin performances at Broadway’s Hudson Theatre on May 18 in anticipation of a June 22 opening.

1984 tells the story of Winston Smith (Sturridge), a furtive rebel-in-waiting living under the perpetually militaristic thumb of a despotic government led by the all-seeing Big Brother. Wilde plays Julia, a woman who joins Winston in his quiet resistance to the Party, and Birney will play O’Brien, a senior ministry official and colleague of Winston’s who keeps a watchful eye on him.

Joining the leading trio will be Wayne Duvall (Parsons), Carl Hendrick Louis (Martin), Nick Mills (Syme), Michael Potts (Charrington), and Cara Seymour (Mrs. Parsons).

While 1984 will mark Wilde’s debut, it marks the second Broadway credit for Sturridge, who received a Tony nomination for his debut performance in 2013’s Orphans. Broadway veteran Birney, on the other hand, joins 1984 fresh off his Tony win for his role in 2016’s critically acclaimed play The Humans.