Broadway's Of Mice and Men sets house record, is coming to the big screen


Reviewing the Broadway production of John Steinbeck’s “Of Mice and Men,” when it opened in April, Ben Brantley wrote in The New York Times that James Franco’s portrayal of George is “a tight, internal performance begging for a camera’s close-up.”

As it turns out it will have one, courtesy of the National Theater Live, the London company’s video division, David Binder, the show’s producer, announced Wednesday. The production, which ends its 19-week run Sunday, will be the first Broadway production filmed for the series, which has so far broadcast 40 productions – all British, until now – to 500 theaters around the world.

The play, which starred Mr. Franco and Chris O’Dowd in their Broadway debuts, won enthusiastic reviews, recouped its capitalization after 12 weeks and broke the Longacre Theater’s record for gross ticket receipts, with sales of $929,343 for the week of July 20. When the show closes on Sunday it will have run for 118 regular performances and 31 previews.


The performance the National Theater is filming will add one to that total. Instead of loading out the sets on Monday, the Longacre will load in the National Theater’s equipment. On Tuesday the play will be performed again for the National Theater’s cameras and an invited audience. Wayne W. Wolfe, a spokesman for Mr. Binder, said that the National Theater had come to agreements with the unions involved, but could not give details. Screening dates for “Of Mice and Men” have not been announced.

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