The full cast has been announced for this summer’s West End revival of Simon Gray’s comedy Butley. Alongside Dominic West, star of hit US drama The Wire, who will play the iconic title role of the rapier-tongued lecturer Butley, will be Paul McGann (Withnail and I, Doctor Who), Penny Downie, (RSC’s Hamlet, Invictus) and Amanda Drew (ENRON, Eastenders).
Ben Butley is having a monumentally bad day. So bad, he’s making sure everyone else has a worse one. His estranged wife has taken up with the most boring man in London. His beloved protégé has found a new benefactor. And in an unprecedented act of betrayal even the English department’s resident failure has a book deal. Butley’s trusty arsenal – mischievous irony and gleeful troublemaking – have never failed him yet. Might they finally prove to be the weapons of his own tragic self-destruction?
Butley premiered in 1971 in Harold Pinter’s award-winning production starring Alan Bates at London’s Criterion Theatre. Forty years on, West takes the lead in this razor sharp and darkly comic assault on the soft underbelly of academia.
Full cast: Dominic West, Paul McGann, Penny Downie, Amanda Drew, Martin Hutson, Cai Brigden, Emma Hiddleston
The production will be directed by Lindsay Posner, designed by Peter McKintosh, with lighting designed by Howard Harrison.
Dominic West played the character of Jimmy McNulty in five seasons of The Wire (HBO) from 2002 to 2008. His other screen credits include The Devil’s Whore, Centurion and 300. His theatre credits include The Seagull (Old Vic), As You Like It (West End), The Voysey Inheritance (National), Rock ‘n’ Roll (West End) and Life Is A Dream (Donmar).
Paul McGann will play Reg Nuttall. His first major role was as Percy Topliss in the BBC series The Monocled Mutineer. Best known for his role in Withnail and I and as the eighth Doctor in Doctor Who, Paul’s theatre work includes Helen (Globe Theatre) and Mourning Becomes Electra (National Theatre). Paul also recently appeared as Mark North in the TV series Luther.
Penny Downie will play Edna Shaft. Her recent stage roles include Gertrude in Hamlet and Penelope in The Penelopiad (both for the RSC) and Dinner (National Theatre/West End).
Amanda Drew will play Anne Butley. Amanda played the role of Beth in the recent West End revival of Simon Gray’s Otherwise Engaged. Other recent stage appearances include House of Games (Almeida), ENRON (Chichester/Royal Court/West End), Parlour Song (Almeida) and The Ugly One (Royal Court). She also played the regular character of Dr May Wright in Eastenders (BBC TV), and won the Evening Standard Award for Best Newcomer for her role in Eastward Ho! (RSC) in 2002.
Martin Hutson will play Joseph Keyston. His stage credits include Anthony and Cleopatra (Liverpool Playhouse), Taking Sides / Collaboration (Chichester/West End), The Voysey Inheritance (NT), The Comedy of Errors (Sheffield) and As You Like It (RSC). He was nominated in 2001 for the Ian Charleson Award for his roles in Ghosts (West End) and As You Like It (Sheffield)
Lindsay Posner’s credits include An Ideal Husband, A View From The Bridge (both West End), Fiddler on the Roof (Sheffield Crucible and West End), Fool for Love, Oleanna (both West End) and Death and the Maiden (Royal Court/West End).
Press night will be held on Monday 6th June 2011 at 7pm.
Press release issued by: The Corner Shop