Hugh Jackman, Daniel Craig Interrupted On Stage By Cellphone

Recently, while performing on stage in a Broadway play, Hugh Jackman was interrupted by a ringing cell phone. He immediately broke from the script and addressed the interfering culprit. The audience cheered after Jackman asked the offender to turn off the noisy device.

For some odd reason, the ringing persisted and Jackman fiercely reiterated his position. The entire ordeal was captured on video by an audience member and posted on TMZ.com (see below).

When it was all said and done, the interruption caused a substantial break in the action not to mention a break in Jackman’s character.

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As general entertainment news sources dissect the humor and/or rudeness of the situation, Broadway is pretty much ignoring the incident all together.

The three biggest Broadway websites, Broadway.com, Theatermania.com, and Playbill.com, make no mention of the interruption. This obviously speaks to the fact that incredibly rude behavior is frequent on the Great White Way, even if it’s seldom captured on video.

It also a testament to the importance of the Jackman’s play. While the general entertainment news media focuses solely on Wolverine’s outburst, on Broadway the play–called A Steady Rain and also stars Daniel Craig–is a huge event.

Inevitably, the production is far too important to be associated with something so trivial as a cell phone interruption. Land of Punt was able to find very few news stories that did justice to the play.

Already A Steady Rain has broken the mark for highest grossing non-musical, and it officially hasn’t even opened (more on that later). In the week ending Sept. 20, the play grossed $1,167,954. For the week ending Sept. 27, it grossed $1,153,779. Those amounts are impressive for a musical they are mind boggling for a play.

Generally, the only productions that reach the million-dollar mark are insanely popular musicals like Wicked, Billy Madison, Jersey Boys, The Lion King and West Side Story. Recently, the highest grossing non-musical has been God of Carnage. It usually hauls in between $700,000 and $900,000 a week.

For Broadway, A Steady Rain is like a Bond movie or X-men: Origins (yes, the analogy was intentional). It’s television equivalent would be Glee or Community.

The play, written by Kevin Huff, opens tonight (Sept. 29). In case you’re wondering, the aforementioned occurrence took place during a “preview.” The play has been available for preview since Sept. 10.

The two character drama was directed by John Crowley. Theater fans can see Jackman and Craig walk the boards at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre.

Producers of the play explain it thusly: “a new American play that tells the story of two Chicago cops who are lifelong friends and their differing accounts of a few harrowing days that changed their lives forever.”

According to Playbill the “production features set and costume design by two-time Tony Award winner Scott Pask, lighting design by two-time Tony Award nominee Hugh Vanstone and original music and sound design by Mark Bennett. Michael J. Passaro is production stage manager.”

While we’re dropping Tony awards and Tony nominations, Jackman is a Tony winner (The Boy From Oz) and Crowley a Tony nominee.

Craig has had substantial theater experience in England, but A Steady Rain marks his Broadway debut.

The cellphone incident was comical even though it highlighted the ever growing coarseness of our culture and probably deserves a mention or two. Unfortunately what is lost in the boorish interruption, and the media blitz it encouraged, is A Steady Rain.

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