Two Stars Have Turned Down Annie And One Was Turned Away!

Categories: Theater

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The producers of the upcoming Annie revival know that whoever plays the mean orphanage lady Miss Hannigan has to be even more memorable than fright wigs and eyes without pupils.

Dorothy Loudon (above) originated the role and culminated her career with a brilliantly funny, witty performance that nabbed her a Tony.

Furthermore, Carol Burnett Hanniganed it up in the movie, Nell Carter played it in a Broadway revival, Kathy Bates did it on TV, and former sitcom stars have gone for broke in regional and/or dinner theater.

So who'll dare to snarl about "Little Girls" this time?

Well, at last night's Broadway Beauty Pageant, my fellow judge Jackie Hoffman (Xanadu, The Addams Family) told me they wouldn't even let her audition!

Leapin' lizards!

Apparently they have their sights on certain names that they're reaching out to before any possible auditions happen.

I hear they've offered the part to Tracey Ullman and Allison Janney -- and they both turned it down!

And of course Rosie O'Donnell apparently wants it, especially since OWN has disowned her show (and some of her staffers would say she's perfect).

The important thing to remember is that whoever gets this plum role needs to be deep-down appealing in her cartoony wiliness.

I say give it to Jackie even without an audition.


PS: The pageant (benefiting the Ali Forney Center) was a hoot, with Tovah Feldshuh once again making a terrific host and rolling with the punches all night, and Tonya Pinkins rounding out the judges' panel with charm.

The winner, Andrew Chappelle from Mamma Mia!, clinched it when he was asked which theater legend of all-time he'd like to be.

"Bea Arthur!" he blurted.

She would have made an amazing Miss Hannigan.


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18 comments
Musto
Musto

HuffPo today is saying that Rosie O'Donnell will get the role. Nothing's been signed yet, but the negotiations are on and looks like it's hers.

Musto
Musto

Someone on Datalounge is claiming Jane Lynch will do the part. That would be choice.

Shampers
Shampers

A lot of the ideas here would be good if this were being done in a bar in Provincetown, but this is Broadway, folks.

Pollypeachum
Pollypeachum

Yeah, but Ballroom was a flop, though she scored with her "50%" song and sang it at many a benefit.

Southern Dave
Southern Dave

Varla Jean Merman as Miss Hannigan! I'm serious! She can sing the shit out of anything and  is FUNNNNEEEEE.

Dorothy Loudon's career didn't culminate with "Annie." That happened with Michael Bennett's "Ballroom," where she sang "50 Per Cent" and the night I saw it, the  theater was full and the roar at the end of that song and the show nearly tore the roof off the Majestic.

David
David

I know she is not the big name they are looking for but Julie Halston (The Divine Sister) would be the PERFECT Miss Hannigan.  

Phyllis
Phyllis

Darn, again:  I hate typos!  I meant I'D love to play Miss Hannigan...

Phyllis
Phyllis

Darn!  I've love to play Miss Hannigan... alas, I'm not in Actors Equity.

gabs
gabs

Hoffman would be an over the top mess.  I can't even stand to look at the woman.  So full of herself and over rated. 

O'Snap
O'Snap

Tony Pinkins any relation to Tonya?

MartinNYID
MartinNYID

Annie. Again? Really? BWB. (Bored with Broadway).

Bwaybill
Bwaybill

Why not get Carol Burnett again? She's still around and Hannigan doesn't have to be any particular age.

Vava
Vava

Tracey Ullman would have been amazing.

nostradavid
nostradavid

Jane would have a huge stage presence.I saw her interview Joan Rivers on CNN while filling in for Piers. He left a video saying she had big shoes to fill - she thought her size 11 feet would do it. 

Ovo
Ovo

You'd be better than Rosie!

Cazzie
Cazzie

I find her hilarious. Loved her in Xanadu and her one woman shows.

Musto
Musto

Another drive-by correcter. I marvel at people who can read a whole piece and then just chime in with the one mistake with no other comment. Anyway, it was a Freudian typo which I'll explain some other time. I have corrected it. 

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