Every day is opening night.

Paul Rudd and Michael Shannon to Star in Fall 2012 Broadway Premiere of “Grace” by Craig Wright

                          Rick Miramontez / Molly Barnett
rick@oandmco.com / molly@oandmco.com





“ G R A C E ”





New York, NY (June 4, 2012) – Producers Debbie Bisno, Fox Theatricals and Paula Wagner announced today the Broadway Premiere of Grace, the acclaimed American play by Award-winning writer Craig Wright (Mistakes Were Made, Recent Tragic Events, Lady; “Six Feet Under”).  Grace will premiere in a strictly limited engagement beginning on Friday, September 14, 2012 at a Shubert Theater to be announced.  Dexter Bullard (Tracy Letts’ BUG) will direct the production, which will feature an all-star cast that includes Paul Rudd and Academy Award® nominee Michael Shannon, with Kate Arrington and seven-time Emmy Award®-winner Edward Asner, who returns to Broadway for the first time in nearly 25 years. Opening Night is set for Thursday, October 4, 2012.

A thrilling cast combines with one of theater's truly original voices, in this enthralling Broadway premiere that asks: are we in control of our lives or is there something else at work? With a grippingly innovative dramatic structure, Grace follows a wide-eyed young couple (Rudd & Arrington) as they start a new life in sunny, promise-filled Florida, with big plans to open a chain of Gospel motels. An agitated neighbor (Shannon) and a caustic exterminator (Asner) complete the eclectic foursome as destinies collide in this intensely entertaining and suspenseful journey to the edge of your seat.

Grace first premiered to critical acclaim at The Woolly Mammoth Theatre in Washington, DC in 2004, and was subsequently seen in a celebrated production at Northlight Theater in Chicago, and at the Pasadena Playhouse in Los Angeles (where it received 3 LA Drama Critics Circle Awards including Best Play).

Paul Rudd made his Broadway debut in Tony Award-winning The Last Night of Ballyhoo in 1997 and has since starred in Twelfth Night (1998), Three Days of Rain (2006) and Off Broadway in The Shape of Things (2001), among many other stage productions.  Kate Arrington, who is currently appearing at the Goodman Theatre in Iceman Cometh opposite Nathan Lane and Brian Dennehy, is a Steppenwolf Theatre ensemble member, whose productions there include The Hot L Baltimore, The Well-Appointed Room, The Pain and the Itch and The Violet HourEdward Asner last appeared on Broadway in 1989, opposite Madeline Kahn in Born Yesterday.  This production of Grace marks its New York Premiere (in an updated script) and the Broadway debuts of playwright Craig Wright, director Dexter Bullard, and Michael Shannon, who have a fifteen-plus year history of collaboration in the theater on works including, most recently, Mistakes Were Made.
Complete design team, ticket information, and other Grace news will be announced shortly.  www.graceonbroadway.com.


Paul Rudd has become one of the most popular and marketable comedy stars through his string of roles in films such as The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Knocked Up, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, I Love You, Man, Role Models (he also served as co-writer), and the independent feature Our Idiot Brother which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. In addition to Rudd's success in film, he is an accomplished stage actor.  In 2006 he starred on Broadway in Three Days of Rain, alongside Bradley Cooper and Julia Roberts.  In 2001, he played opposite Rachel Weisz, in Neil LaBute‟s The Shape of Things in London at the Almeida Theatre and Off Broadway at the Promenade Theater.  For his performance, Rudd garnered a 2002 Drama League Award nomination for Outstanding Performance by an Actor.  Additional Broadway credits include The Last Night of Ballyhoo (Helen Hayes), Twelfth Night (Lincoln Center), as well as Long Day's Journey Into Night (Lyric Theatre, London), Ancestral Voices (George Street Playhouse, Westport Playhouse) and Bash (Douglas Fairbanks Theater, Canon Theater). Paul will next be seen starring in Judd Apatow’s This Is 40 opposite Leslie Mann. The film expands on the story of Pete (Rudd) and Debbie (Mann) from Knocked Up as we see first-hand how they are dealing with their current state of life. Other upcoming film projects include Stephen Chbosky’s The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Phil Morrison’s Lucky Dog starring opposite Paul Giamatti, David Wain’s They Came Together opposite Amy Poehler, Paul Weitz’s Admission opposite Tina Fey and Michael Sheen, and Adam McKay’s Anchorman 2 opposite Will Ferrell, Steve Carell and David Koechner.  Rudd graduated from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in LA and studied at the British Drama Academy at Oxford University, Britain.  He first gained attention with his break-out performance in the 1995 film Clueless. Additional early films include Wet Hot American Summer, Cider House Rules, The Object of my Affection, and William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet, starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes. In television, Rudd was co-writer/co-creator of the critically acclaimed series “Party Down” on Starz. He also garnered wide recognition with a recurring role on the TV sitcom “Friends” as Mike Hannigan.

Michael Shannon is currently in production on season three of Martin Scorsese’s HBO series, Boardwalk Empire, co-starring Steve Buscemi and Kelly Macdonald.  Upcoming projects include David Koepp’s Premium Rush, opposite Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Zack Snyder’s much anticipated Superman reboot, Man of Steel, starring as ‘General Zod,’ opposite Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, and Diane Lane. Recently, Shannon wrapped filming on Ariel Vromen’s, The Iceman opposite Chris Evans, Winona Ryder, and Ray Liotta.  Most notably, Shannon made his mark in an Oscar-nominated supporting role in Revolutionary Road, playing ‘John Givings’, the psychologically troubled neighbor’s son.  Directed by Sam Mendes and adapted by Justin Haythe, the film stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, and Kathy Bates.  With over thirty roles in film, Shannon’s credits include Liza Johnson’s Return, Marc Forster’s Machine Gun Preacher, Floria Sigismondi’s The Runaways, Werner Herzog’s My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done and Bad Lieutenant, Sydney Lumet’s Before the Devil Knows Your Dead, Oliver Stone’s World Trade Center, William Friedkin’s Bug, Curtis Hanson’s Lucky You, Michael Bay’s Bad Boys II, Curtis Hanson’s 8 Mile, David McNally’s Kangaroo Jack, Cameron Crowe’s Vanilla Sky, Michael Bay’s Pearl Harbor, John Waters’ Cecil B. DeMented, Noah Buschel’s The Missing Person, and Shana Feste’s The Greatest.  Shannon’s stage credits include Craig Wright’s Off Broadway play, Mistakes Were Made, at the Barrow Street Theater. Directed by Dexter Bullard.  Additional theatre credits include Our Town (Barrow Street Theatre), Lady (Rattlestick Theatre), The Metal Children (Vineyard Theatre), The Little Flower of East Orange (Public Theatre), The Pillowman (Steppenwolf Theatre), Bug (Barrow Street Theatre, Red Orchid Theatre and Gate Theatre), Man From Nebraska (Steppenwolf Theatre), Mr. Kolpert (Red Orchid Theatre), Killer Joe (SoHo Playhouse, Next Lab Theatre and Vaudeville Theatre), The Idiot (Lookingglass Theatre), The Killer (Red Orchid Theatre), and Woyzeck (Gate Theatre).

Kate Arrington. Currently receiving acclaim for her performance in Iceman Cometh at the Goodman Theater (with Nathan Lane and Brian Dennehy), Kate is a Steppenwolf Ensemble member, where she has performed in Hot L Baltimore, Detroit, A Parallelogram, Fake, The Pain and the Itch, The Well-Appointed Room and The Violet Hour. Other theater credits include: Broadway: The American Plan. Off-Broadway: Happy Now?, When the Messenger is Hot, Far and Wide, Everett Beekin, Bluebeard and Other Less Grisly Tales of Love, Sexy Saint James, and Boom. Regional:  King Lear with Stacey Keach at the Goodman; The American Plan and Hold Please at The Old Globe; and The Violet Hour at South Coast Rep. Film: Hello I Must Be Going, The Missing Person and The King of Irontown. Arrington is a graduate of Northwestern University.

Edward Asner.  Versatile, committed, eloquent and talented are all adjectives that describe actor/activist and seven-time Emmy Award recipient, Edward Asner.  He is best known for his comedic and dramatic crossover as the gruff but soft-hearted journalist Lou Grant, the role he originated on the landmark TV comedy “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and continued in the newspaper-set drama “Lou Grant,” which earned him 5 Emmys & 3 Golden Globes.  Most recently, he starred as Carl Fredricksen in Pixar's box-office-hit UP!, which won the Oscar and Golden Globe Awards for Best Animated Feature.  Asner currently tours the country as Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the critically acclaimed one-man show FDR, which he has been doing for over three years. His prolific and much honored acting career demonstrates a consummate ability to transcend the line between comedy and drama. Asner's dozens of films include Fort Apache the Bronx, JFK, Elf (with Will Farrell) and many more. One of the most honored actors in the history of TV, Asner has been the recipient of 7 Emmy Awards and 16 nominations, 5 Golden Globes and served as National President of the Screen Actors Guild for 2 terms. In 2002, he was honored by SAG with the Life Achievement Award, presented annually to an actor who fosters the highest ideals of the profession. Grace marks his first appearance on Broadway in nearly a quarter century, having last appeared on the Great White Way in Born Yesterday (1989).

Craig Wright (Playwright) is the recipient of numerous theatrical honors and awards.  Mistakes Were Made, featuring Academy Award nominee Michael Shannon & dir. by Dexter Bullard, was recently seen in New York at the Barrow Street Theater (where it garnered a place in Time Magazine's top 10 productions of 2010) and in Chicago at A Red Orchid Theatre. He received the 2009 Horton Foote Excellence in Playwriting Award.  Grace premiered at Woolly Mammoth in Washington, DC and was nominated for the Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding New Play. It was seen in a critically acclaimed production at Northlight Theater in Chicago, also in LA (where it received 3 LA Drama Critic’s Awards including Best Play).  Recent Tragic Events debuted at Woolly and was produced by Playwrights Horizons, w/ Heather Graham.  It was a finalist for the American Theatre Critics New Play Award and the Helen Hayes MacArthur Award for Outstanding New Play. Melissa Arctic, a contemporary adaptation of The Winter’s Tale, won the ‘05 Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding New Play. His Orange Flower Water at Steppenwolf Theater was praised by the Chicago Sun-Times as one of the Best Plays of the Year and Molly’s Delicious received a Barrymore nom for Best New Play.  The Pavilion has been produced around the country and in NYC, where it received a Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding New Play. Other plays include: Blind at Rattlestick, The Gray Sisters at Third Rail Rep, The Unseen at the Humana Festival of Louisville, The Road Theatre in LA and The Cherry Lane Theatre in NYC. Wright received an Emmy nomination for his “Six Feet Under” episode “Twilight” and a WGA nomination for his episode “Falling Into Place.”  He served as writer and producer for the JJ Abrams series “Lost” and the ABC series “Brothers & Sisters.” Creator and Executive Producer of his own series, “Dirty Sexy Money,” which aired on ABC for 2 seasons and starred Donald Sutherland. Wright is the creator of a new scripted drama series entitled “Underemployed,” which will premiere this fall on MTV.

Dexter Bullard (Director) is an award-winning director, recently represented by Circle Mirror Transformation at Victory Gardens Theatre Chicago, the world premiere of The Big Meal at American Theatre Co., Mistakes Were Made at Barrow Street Theater (NYC with Michael Shannon), Reverie w/Second City, Lady at Rattlestick Theatre NYC and Gas for Less at the Goodman.  In 2004, Dexter was awarded the Lucille Lortel Award and NY Times raves from Ben Brantley for his direction of Tracy Letts’ Bug in NYC, as well as a Drama Desk Nomination.  Dexter co–founded Plasticene, a theater co. whose critically–acclaimed works have been featured at Steppenwolf, Edinburgh, and in NY.  He has directed with Second City, led a National Touring Company & developed revues at E.T.C.  He founded The Lab at The Next Theatre where he produced the world premiere of Tracy Lett’s Killer Joe.  He directs for Steppenwolf, Famous Door, Northlight, Hartford Stage, A Red Orchid among others. 

Debbie Bisno (Producer). Broadway: Annie (2012), War Horse, Merchant of Venice, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, A Life in the Theatre, Colin Quinn’s/Jerry Seinfeld’s Long Story Short, HAIR, Finian’s Rainbow and Speed the Plow. Debbie produced the 2011 Off Broadway hit Through a Glass Darkly with Carey Mulligan, in association with the Atlantic Theater. With theatrical roots in Chicago, she was Co-Founder & Producer of Roadworks Productions, a theater co. founded by Northwestern U. graduates.  Roadworks held residencies at Steppenwolf & Victory Gardens theaters, and produced 11 seasons of award winning plays and MW Premiers by authors including Kenneth Lonergan, Phyllis Nagy, Patrick Marber, Howard Korder, Eric Bogosian, and Mike Leigh. Film: Michael Jordan to the Max, PULSE: a STOMP Odyssey, Auschwitz: Inside the Nazi State for PBS/BBC.  She co-produced Steppenwolf's 25th Anniversary Special hosted by Bill Murray featuring the Ensemble.  Other: guest lecturer at the Yale School of Drama; Board Member of the Yale Summer Cabaret; Board Member of FASPE (Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics); Chairperson of Friends of YIMT (Yale Institute for Music Theatre.) www.bisnoproductions.com

Fox Theatricals (Producer). Headed by Kristin Caskey and Mike Isaacson, Fox is a multiple Tony Award winning production company. Currently: Bring It On: The Musical (Broadway and National Tour) and Traces (NY, National Tour).  Broadway credits include Red (six Tony Awards, including Best Play); Everyday Rapture; The Seagull; Legally Blonde: The Musical ( Broadway and London, Olivier Award for Best New Musical); ‘night, Mother; Caroline, or Change; Thoroughly Modern Millie (6 Tony Awards, including Best Musical); One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (Tony Award); Death of a Salesman (Tony Award); You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown; Jekyll & Hyde.  Off-Bway: Trying, Lobby Hero, Three Tall Women, Picasso at the Lapin Agile.  National tours: 9 to 5; Legally Blonde: The Musical; Thoroughly Modern Millie; Death of a Salesman; Jekyll & Hyde.  Fox is a member of the Independent Presenters Network (producer on Spamalot, The Color Purple and Edward Scissorhands) and operator of Chicago’s Briar Street Theater.  Fox Theatricals is a division of Fox Associates, owner and operator of The Fabulous Fox Theatre in St. Louis, and is led by President Richard Baker and owners Robert Baudendistel, Mary Strauss.

Paula Wagner (Producer). Wagner has worked in the top ranks of the entertainment industry as a talent agent, film producer and studio executive.  She spent 15 years as a talent agent at Creative Artists Agency, and has produced over 20 feature films including the Mission: Impossible film trilogy, The Last Samurai, Vanilla Sky and The Others.  Paula served as Chief Executive Officer of United Artists Entertainment from 2006 to 2008, and most recently, executive produced the critically-acclaimed Lifetime original movie Five.  She serves on the Board of Trustees of Film Forum in NY, the National Film Preservation Foundation through the Library of Congress, and Carnegie Mellon University, where she received her degree and is an adjunct faculty member.  She is also a member of the Producers Guild of America and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.  Among many awards and honors as a producer, she received the Sherry Lansing award from the Big Brothers and Big Sisters. Wagner currently develops theatre, film, and television through her company, Chestnut Ridge Productions.

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