It’s interesting to read that there has been much grumbling from some sections of Broadway about the invasion of Hollywood at this year’s Tony Awards (Variety: 18 June). Even a Facebook group called “Give the Tonys Back to Broadway” has been formed by Broadway actor Hunter Foster, and now has over 7,000 members.

Katie Holmes and Daniel Radcliffe at the Tony Awards

It can seem like sour grapes when “legit” stage performers moan about Hollywood stars outshining them at their own awards ceremony, particularly when it’s said stars that help to bring the world’s attention to their industry.

The Olivier Awards committee must watch and weep at the enormous star count at the Tonys, even if reasons for being there range from the legitimate – treading the Broadway boards (Denzel Washington, Scarlett Johansson), producing a Broadway show (Will Smith) – to the slightly random (Katie Holmes, Paula Abdul, Raquel Welch…).

With a softening of fim production and a desire to legitimise their acting careers with stage work, film stars on both sides of the Atlantic have been taking to the stage in increasing numbers, with recent British examples including Keira Knightley and Jude Law.

Which seems fair enough when theatre is increasingly turning to cinema and TV to broaden its audience, from the Met and the National Theatre’s international cinema programmes, to Glee’s parade of Broadway stars and TV talent shows such as Five’s forthcoming Don’t Stop Believing featuring Sweet Charity’s Tamsin Outhwaite. It’s a two-way street and theatre stars are benefitting from the screen.

In terms of the Tonys, a high star count does at least mean that a major US network, in this case CBS, is willing to televise the awards. In the UK there is no single channel willing to pick  up the Oliviers, a fact put very nicely by Douglas Hodge in his Winners Circle interview after winning his Tony award.

If the Tonys weren’t televised at all, then maybe Hunter et al would have much more to complain about.