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Anne Hathaway to Star in GROUNDED at the Public; Julie Taymor Directs!

The Public Theater announced today that George Brant's spellbinding, ripped-from-the-headlines play GROUNDED, with Academy Award winner Anne Hathaway, has been added to the 2014-15 downtown season. Directed by Academy Award nominee and two-time Tony Award winner Julie Taymor, GROUNDED marks the return to the Public Theater stage for Hathaway who played Viola in the 2009 Shakespeare in the Park production of Twelfth Night. GROUNDED will begin performances in the Anspacher Theater on Tuesday, April 7 and run through Sunday, May 17, with an official press opening on Thursday, April 23.

"Anne Hathaway and Julie Taymor are amazing, unique artists, and we are honored to produce them at The Public Theater," said Artistic Director Oskar Eustis. "Grounded is a brilliant and important play, a meditation on the human and moral costs of our astonishing military technology. This promises to be an unforgettable theatrical event, and an important addition to our national conversation."

Member tickets, priced at $60, are on sale now. Single tickets, starting at $85, will be available on Thursday, February 12, and can be accessed by calling (212) 967-7555,, or in person at the Taub Box Office at The Public Theater at Astor Place at 425 Lafayette Street. The Library at The Public is open nightly for food and drinks, beginning at 5:30 p.m., and Joe's Pub at The Public continues to offer some of the best music in the city.

In GROUNDED, an ace fighter pilot reassigned to a remote-controlled drone faces 12-hour shifts hunting targets from her Air Force trailer followed by 12 hours in the suburbs with her family in this award-winning new play about the complicated consequences of waging war without leaving home. Named one of the Best Plays of the year by both London's The Evening Standard and The Guardian, and winner of the Smith Prize for Political Theater.

GROUNDED features scenic design by Riccardo Hernandez, lighting design by Christopher Akerlind, sound design by Will Pickens, projection design by Peter Nigrini, and original music and soundscapes by Elliot Goldenthal.

GEORGE BRANT (Playwright). His plays include Elephant's Graveyard, The Mourners' Bench, Any Other Name, Salvage, Grizzly Mama, and Three Voyages of the Lobotomobile. A Core Writer at the Playwrights' Center, his scripts have been produced internationally by Trinity Repertory Company, the Studio Theatre, Cleveland Play House, Gate Theatre, Page 73, and the Traverse Theatre, among others. His plays have received the Smith Prize, a Fringe First Award, a Creative Workforce Fellowship, an Off-West End Theatre Award, an NNPN Rolling World Premiere and the Keene Prize for Literature. He is published by Samuel French, Oberon Books and Smith & Kraus.

JULIE TAYMOR (Director)'s most recent work is a cinematic version of William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, filmed during her critically acclaimed, sold-out stage production that ran at Theatre for a New Audience's new home in downtown Brooklyn. The film was shown at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival as part of the Mavericks in Film Programme. In 1998, Taymor became the first woman to win the Tony Award for Best Direction of a Musical, and won a Tony for Best Costumes, for her landmark production of The Lion King. The musical has gone on to become Broadway's highest grossing show and proclaimed the top grossing title of all time. Her 1996 Broadway debut, Juan Darien: A Carnival Mass, earned five Tony Award nominations. Other theatre credits include The Green Bird, Titus Andronicus, The Tempest, The Taming of the Shrew, The Transposed Heads, and Liberty's Taken. Taymor's feature films include Titus, starring Anthony Hopkins, Jessica Lange and Alan Cumming; the biographical film Frida, starring Salma Hayek and Alfred Molina, which earned six Academy Award nominations, winning two; the Beatles inspired Across the Universe, nominated for a Golden Globe nomination for Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy; and her Helen Mirren-starring adaptation of William Shakespeare's The Tempest, which had its North American premiere at the New York Film Festival following a world premiere at the Venice International Film Festival. Beyond the theatre and screen, Taymor has directed five operas internationally, including Oedipus Rex with Jessye Norman, for which she earned the International Classical Music Award for Best Opera Production and an Emmy for a subsequent film version; as well as Salome, The Flying Dutchman, Die Zauberflote (in repertory at The Met), The Magic Flute (the abridged English version, which inaugurated a PBS series entitled "Great Performances at the Met"), and Elliot Goldenthal's Grendel. Taymor is a 1991 recipient of the MacArthur "genius" Fellowship.

ANNE HATHAWAY (The Pilot)'s theatrical credits include The Public's free Shakespeare in the Park's 2009 production of Twelfth Night (Drama Desk nomination) and Carnival at City Center Encores! (Clarence Derwent Award). Hathaway studied at The Barrow Group, NYU's Collaborative Arts Projects "CAP 21" and at the Paper Mill Playhouse in New Jersey. Hathaway most recently starred in Christopher Nolan's Interstellar alongside Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain and Michael Caine. Other film credits include Song One, Tom Hooper's Les Miserables (Academy, BAFTA, SAG and Golden Globe Awards), Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight Rises, One Day, Rio 1&2, Ed Zwick's Love and Other Drugs (Golden Globe nomination), Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, Jonathan Demme's Rachel Getting Married (Academy Award, SAG, Golden Globe, and Independent Spirit Award nominations, NBR Best Actress); Get Smart; Becoming Jane; The Devil Wears Prada opposite Meryl Streep; Ang Lee's Brokeback Mountain (SAG nomination Best Ensemble) and Garry Marshall's beloved The Princess Diaries alongside Julie Andrews. Television credits include voice work on "The Simpsons" (Emmy Award) and "Family Guy," and on the FOX series "Get Real" with Jesse Eisenberg. She recently starred opposite Robert DeNiro in Nancy Meyers' The Intern, and 2016 will appear in Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass. Hathaway is a Public Theater Board Member.

ABOUT THE PUBLIC THEATER - Under the leadership of Artistic Director Oskar Eustis and Executive Director Patrick Willingham, The Public Theater is the only theater in New York that produces Shakespeare, the classics, musicals, contemporary and experimental pieces in equal measure. The Public continues the work of its visionary founder, Joe Papp, by acting as an advocate for the theater as an essential cultural force, and leading and framing dialogue on some of the most important issues of our day. Creating theater for one of the largest and most diverse audience bases in New York City for nearly 60 years, today the Company engages audiences in a variety of venues-including its landmark downtown home at Astor Place, which houses five theaters and Joe's Pub; the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, home to its beloved, free Shakespeare in the Park; and the Mobile Unit, which tours Shakespearean productions for underserved audiences throughout New York City's five boroughs. The Public's wide range of programming includes free Shakespeare in the Park, the bedrock of the Company's dedication to making theater accessible to all; Public Works, a new initiative that is designed to cultivate new connections and new models of engagement with artists, audiences and the community each year; new and experimental stagings at The Public at Astor Place, including Public Lab; and a range of artist and audience development initiatives including its Public Forum series, which brings together theater artists and professionals from a variety of disciplines for discussions that shed light on social issues explored in Public productions. The Public Theater is located on property owned by the City of New York and receives annual support from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; and in October 2012 the landmark building downtown at Astor Place was revitalized to physically manifest the Company's core mission of sparking new dialogues and increasing accessibility for artists and audiences, by dramatically opening up the building to the street and community, and transforming the lobby into a public piazza for artists, students, and audiences. Key elements of the revitalization included infrastructure updates to the 158-year old building, as well as construction of new exterior entry stair and glass canopy; installation of ramps for improved accessibility; an expanded and refurbished lobby; the addition of a mezzanine level with a new restaurant lounge, The Library at The Public, designed by the Rockwell Group.

The LuEsther T. Mertz Charitable Trust provides leadership support for The Public Theater's year-round activities; Bank of America, Proud Season Sponsor of Shakespeare in the Park; The Harold & Mimi Steinberg New Play Development Fund at The Public Theater Supports the Creation and Development of New Plays; The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation - Lead Supporter of The Public's Access and Engagement Programming; The Time Warner Foundation, Founding Sponsor of The Emerging Writers Group; Delta Air Lines, Official Airline of The Public Theater; New York Magazine is the official print sponsor of The Public Theater's 2014-2015 downtown season; Public support is provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency; and the National Endowment for the Arts, an independent federal agency.

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