As you know, Tennessee Williams’s culture-clash classic A Streecar Named Desire is coming to Broadway any moment now, featuring a cast of color.
Well, at a Drama Desk panel discussion at Sardi’s the other day, Blair Underwood — who’s playing the old Brando role, the brutish Stanley Kowalski — said he’s just Stanley now.
“Do I look Polish?” he cracked to host Elysa Gardner, from USA Today.
Underwood went on to reveal: “We got permission from the Tennessee Williams estate to take out the ‘Kowalskis.'”
It’s a good thing Stanley simply yells “Stella!” instead of “Stella Kowalski,” or that would have to be changed, too.
Other tidbits from the panel:
*Michael McKean related that author Gore Vidal had come to some rehearsals of his The Best Man. “We talked very little about the play,” admitted McKean. “We wanted to talk about, ‘Who do you think killed Kennedy?'”
*Godspell‘s endlessly crucified Hunter Parrish (from Weeds) smiled and said, “I used to be asked if I smoked weed and now I get asked about Jesus!”
As for the time he was a replacement in Spring Awakening, Parrish said, “That was pretty simple for me because I was a horny teenager.”
When he revealed that he’s now all of 24, McKean chimed in, “I’ve got catheters older than that!”
*Cynthia Nixon said she’d love to play Iago, which led Manhattan Theater Club’s Lynne Meadow to half-jokingly chime in that Cherry Jones would be great as Othello.
But they’d probably have to change the characters’ names!