Oh, Brother! Look Back on Some Famous Brotherly Pairings in TRUE WEST
True West is currently being revived by the Roundabout Theatre Company, starring Ethan Hawke and Paul Dano. The pair have joined a list of many famous duos who have taken on the roles of Lee and Austin in Sam Shepard's play.
From the time the play was first produced in 1980, stars of the likes of John Malkovich, Bruce Willis, Philip Seymour Hoffman, and Mark Rylance took on these iconic roles. We've gathered up a list of some of the most famous pairings in various productions over the years.
True West was produced by the Steppenwolf Theatre Company in 1982, starring these two then-unknown actors. Shortly after, the production transferred Off-Broadway, where it opened at Cherry Lane Theatre in October 1982, and closed on August 4, 1984 after 762 performances.
A television movie of the play, featuring Sinise and Malkovich, aired on the PBS series "American Playhouse" in January 1984.
True West was presented at The Donmar Warehouse in 1994, starring Rylance and Rudko, and directed by Matthew Warchus. This was one of the first international productions of the play. The production began at the Quarry Theatre in Leeds.
The first Broadway production opened at the Circle in the Square Theatre on February 17, 2000, starring Hoffman and Reilly. It closed on July 29, 2000 after 154 performances and 21 previews. The two leads switched parts every so often during the run.
Matthew Warchus directed this production as well. Warchus made a request for the pair of actors to be considered one unit by the Tony Voters, but the Committee decided against it.
Both actors received nominations, however. The production was also nominated for Best Play and Best Director (Matthew Warchus).
The pair did a joint interview on Charlie Rose in 2000 discussing their roles and what it was like to unite on stage. Watch the full interview below:
Willis and Smith starred in a filmed version of the play, which aired on Showtime in August 2002. The play was filmed live in front of an audience in 2001 at the Company of Fools' Liberty Theatre in Hailey, Idaho.
Willis directed and acted in the play in with Company of Fools. When his brother Robert Willis died of cancer during the run, Willis decided to film the performance as a tribute to him.
Currently, Game of Thrones alum Kit Harington is starring alongside Johnny Flynn in a London revival of True West at the Vaudeville Theatre. The show is playing a limited run, which began November 23, 2018 and plays through February 16, 2019.
Watch clips from the production below: