Breaking News: Diahann Carroll Withdraws from Upcoming Broadway Revival of A RAISIN IN THE SUN, LaTanya Richardson Jackson Steps in
BroadwayWorld has confirmed that acclaimed actress Diahann Carroll has withdrawn from the upcoming Broadway revival of Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun, directed by Kenny Leon, and also starring Denzel Washington. LaTanya Richardson Jackson will assume the role of Lena Younger in the production, currently in rehearsals.
A RAISIN IN THE SUN will begin performances Saturday evening, March 8 at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre (247 West 47 Street). Opening night is Thursday, April 3. The 14-week limited engagement run is scheduled through Sunday, June 15.
The production will also star Academy Award-nominee Sophie Okonedo (Hotel Rwanda) making her Broadway debut as Ruth Younger, Tony Award-winner Anika Noni Rose (Caroline, or Change) as Beneatha Younger, David Cromer as Karl Lindner, Sean Patrick Thomas as Joseph Asagai, Jason Dirden (Fences) as George Murchison as and Tony Award-nominee Stephen McKinley Henderson (Fences) as Bobo.
Originally produced in 1959, Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun was the first play written by an African American woman to be produced on Broadway, where it won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play.
Set on Chicago's South Side, A Raisin in the Sun revolves around the divergent dreams and conflicts within three generations of the Younger family: son Walter Lee ( Washington), his wife Ruth (Okonedo), his sister Beneatha (Rose), his son Travis (Jenkins) and matriarch Lena, called Mama (Jackson). When her deceased husband's money comes through, Mama dreams of moving to a new home and a better neighborhood in Chicago. Walter Lee, a chauffeur, has other plans: buying a liquor store and being his own man. Beneatha dreams of medical school. The tensions and prejudice they face form this seminal American drama.
Jackson made her Broadway debut in the revival of August Wilson's Joe Turner's Come and Gone. Her off-Broadway credits include Love, Loss and What I Wore, Casanova, For Colored Girls..., Spell #7, Unfinished Woman (NYSF); Elliot Loves (Promenade); The Talented Tenth (MTC); From the Mississippi Delta (Negro Ensemble Co.); Boogie Woogie and Booker T., Perdido, Nonsectarian Conversations..., Dr. Beck (Henry Street).She has appeared in the films Mothers and Daughters, Bolden!, Blackout, Freedomland, The Fighting Temptations, U.S. Marshalls, Lone Star, Losing Isaiah, When A Man Loves a Woman, Sleepless in Seattle, Lorenzo's Oil, Fried Green Tomatoes, Malcolm X. Her TV credits include "100 Centre Street" (A&E), "Introducing Dorothy Dandridge," "Unchained Memories: Slave Narratives" (HBO), "Jazz," "Baseball," "The Civil War" (PBS), "My Super Sweet 16" (MTV), "The Water is Wide" (Hallmark), "Law & Order," "Boston Public," "NYPD Blue," "Judging Amy," "Chicago Hope," "Sesame Street," "Ally McBeal," "One Life to Live," "Nightman."