RIALTO CHATTER: Banderas Eyes 'ZORBA' For Stage Return
The Desperado star will play the lead role in adaptation of the 1964 film based on a book by Nikos Kazantzakis, reported the website. Banderas spoke about his desire to return to the stage, remarking in the excerpt below when asked about the big screen adaptation of Nine:
Antonio Banderas: All I can tell you is that for me, Nine was a theatrical experience. Probably the most beautiful time that I spent professionally, not in front of a camera, in America was on that stage of Nine every night, fighting with that character and confronting audiences. And I plan to go back to Broadway very soon.
Jordan Hoffman: Do you have something specific in mind or just a general desire to get back onstage?
Antonio Banderas: I've been offered to do Zorba The Greek. Another piece that has to be revisited. I saw the movie a couple weeks ago and it surprised me. I remember seeing the movie in the '70s at some point, but I didn't completely remember the entire story. I remember it being something more festive, more happy, but when I saw it the other day suddenly I found it a dark movie with ups and downs, like life itself, moments of comedy and moments very dark and very profound. And I love that, the possibility of jumping on the stage again to create a character that has nothing to do with what I did in Nine. So if everything goes on track, I believe I'll be onstage again in a year.
The actor won major critical acclaim on Broadway for his performance in Maury Yeston's musical Nine, based on the film 8½, playing the prime role. Banderas won both the Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk awards, and was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Actor in a musical for his performance in Nine.
Although Nine marks Banderas' only Broadway appearance to date, he appeared as Che in the film version of Evita and was also in the running to play the title role in the film adaptation of The Phantom of the Opera (before it went to Gerard Butler). A film star in his native Spain before coming to America, he has acted in such films as Desperado, Original Sin, Femme Fatate, Once Upon a Time in Mexico, Frida, Shrek 2, and the Spy Kids movies, as well as in the HBO film "And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself." He was recently seen in the dance film, Take the Lead.
Photo Credit: Walter McBride/Retna Ltd.