This Week on Stage: Scarlett Johansson opens on Broadway in 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof'
Stars continue to reign on the Great White Way. The latest returnee is Tony-winner Scarlett Johansson in a new revival of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof that’s generated a lot of ink for the liberties that the production almost took with Tennessee Williams’ classic.Meanwhile, producers announced an October opening for a musical based on the 2003 Tim Burton movie Big Fish. And the final curtain will fall this weekend on three (more) Broadway productions: Glengarry Glen Ross, Golden Boy, and Peter and the Starcatcher — though Peter will move to Off Broadway’s New World Stages this spring. Here’s a roundup of four big new arrivals from the last week (click the links to read our full reviews).
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof Scarlett Johansson brings a “fierce fighting spirit” to Maggie the Cat in director Rob Ashford’s “languorous” revival of the Tennessee Williams classic, I write. “Like Brick, who gulps liquor until he hears ‘that little click in my head that makes me peaceful,’ this production tosses back many an intoxicating individual moment without ever quite clicking.” EW grade: B
Picnic William Inge’s 1953 drama about a handsome drifter (Captain America‘s Sebastian Stan) who woos a small-town gal (Taken‘s Maggie Grace) gets a “swell” revival, writes Adam Markovitz. “It’s simply trying — and occasionally managing — to recapture the thrill of molten hormones, the heat of an endless summer day, and the dizzying rush of a first love that could happen anywhere, anytime.” EW grade: B+
Water by the Spoonful Keith Staskiewicz had high praise for Quiara Alegría Hudes’ “humane and lively” new play, which won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and follows three members of a Puerto Rican family seeking to make connections (both online and in person). EW grade: A–
The Other Place Laurie Metcalf, the Steppenwolf veteran best known for her Emmy-winning run on Roseanne, gives a “mesmerizing” performance as a medical researcher who becomes convinced she has a brain tumor. In Sharr White’s new drama, I write, the actress “radiates a brusque intelligence and mordant wit with occasional flashes of raw and childlike vulnerability.”EW grade: A–
Follow Thom on Twitter: @ThomGeier