Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick to Star in Odd Couple revival

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Written by Maya Cantu

Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick will set off sparks once again when they pair up in the revival of Neil Simon's The Odd Couple.

The production, which is to be directed by Joe Mantello, will open at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre on October 4th; current tenant Democracy will soon be vacating the space. Produced by Emanuel Azenberg, Ira Pittelman, Jeffrey Sine, Max Cooper and Ben Sprecher, The Odd Couple will most likely play a limited run with rehearsals commencing on September 6th. Although it has not been confirmed, rumors have it that Lane and Broderick will switch off their roles at certain performances.

The Odd Couple relates the platonic love story of two very mismatched men--neatnik photographer Felix Unger (Broderick) and sportswriting sloven Oscar Madison (Lane). Sharing a room, their initial warm feelings for one another are tested when their lifestyles clash.

The original production of The Odd Couple opened at the Plymouth Theatre on March 10, 1965, and ran for 966 performances. Directed by Mike Nichols, the show starred Art Carney as Felix and Walter Matthau as Oscar. The show won 4 of its 5 Tony nominations, including the Best Author (Play) Tony for Simon. A classic 1968 film version would have Matthau reprising his role as Oscar, with Jack Lemmon as Felix. A revised female version opened in 1985, with Rita Moreno as "Olive" and Sally Struthers as "Florence." There was also a hit TV version that starred Jack Klugman as Oscar and Tony Randall as Felix.

Lane and Broderick established a rapport with each other and with audiences alike while delivering dual star turns in The Producers. A rare theatre star whose fame extends far beyond the Hudson River, Lane is a two-time Tony winner--for The Producers in 2001, and for A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum in 1996. Most recently, he portrayed the Greek god Dionysus in Sondheim's The Frogs, and other Broadway credits include The Man Who Came to Dinner, Love! Valour! Compassion!, Laughter on the 23rd Floor, Guys and Dolls, Wind in the Willows, Merlin and Present Laughter.

Like Lane, Broderick has had extensive experience in film, television and theatre. Broadway credits include Taller Than a Dwarf, Night Must Fall and Biloxi Blues. He received a Tony for his role in the 1995 revival of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying and for 1983's Brighton Beach Memoirs. Most recently, Broderick appeared off-Broadway in The Foreigner, and other off-Broadway credits include The Widow Clare and Torch Song Trilogy.

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