News Nuggets: ‘Smash’ producers will bring live ‘Sound of Music’ to NBC

Oscars for “Beasts of the Southern Wild“? “If you’ve never heard of Quvenzhane Wallis, odds are by the time Oscars are being handed out next February, you’ll be more than passingly acquainted with indie moviedom’s newest, littlest supernova … That’s because with the theatrical release of ‘Beasts of the Southern Wild’ this week, awards season has just kicked off in earnest. Although Serious Movies about Socially Redemptive Subjects, featuring Important Performances and showcasing Heartrending Drama usually start tromping onto movie screens with the onset of autumn and keep on coming through year’s end, the awards-season race this year has gotten off to a gallop during 2012’s hottest months.” THE DAILY BEAST

Smash” producers will present a live broadcast of “The Sound of Music”: “NBC is partnering with the acclaimed ‘Smash’ producing team of Craig Zadan and Neil Meron (film versions of ‘Chicago’ and ‘Hairspray’) to present a live broadcast of ‘The Sound of Music,’ based on the original Broadway musical, it was announced today by Robert Greenblatt, Chairman, NBC Entertainment. Casting will begin immediately and an air date will be announced shortly. ‘It is our supreme pleasure to broadcast — live — a new version of the seminal Broadway musical “The Sound of Music” for a whole new generation,’ said Greenblatt.” BROADWAY WORLD

Sigourney Weaver and David Hyde Pierce will star in Chekhov-inspired play: “Sigourney Weaver and David Hyde Pierce are teaming up to play siblings this fall as both make a return to the stage in a Chekhov-inspired play. Weaver, a three-time Academy Award nominee, and Tony Award-winning Pierce will star in Christopher Durang’s ‘Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike.’ The play, which takes characters and themes from Chekhov and sets them in present day Pennsylvania, will start life at the McCarter Theatre in New Jersey before jumping to Lincoln Center Theater in October. In the play, Vanya (Pierce) and his stepsister have stayed home to take care of their ailing parents while their movie star sister Masha (Weaver) has been touring the world. Sparks fly at a family reunion.” WASHINGTON POST

Kinky Boots” musical will start in Chicago before making its way to Broadway: “Producers Daryl Roth and Hal Luftig have announced the full cast and creative team for the World Premiere of ‘Kinky Boots,’ the new musical that brings together four-time Tony Award-winner Harvey Fierstein (Book) and Grammy Award-winning rock icon Cyndi Lauper (Music & Lyrics). Directed and choreographed by Tony Award-winner Jerry Mitchell, ‘Kinky Boots’ will play the Bank of America Theatre (18 West Monroe Street, Chicago, IL) beginning October 2 through November 4, 2012, in advance of a Broadway opening. Tony Award nominee Stark Sands (‘Journey’s End’; ‘American Idiot’) and Billy Porter (‘Angels in America’; ‘Smokey Joe’s Café’) lead a cast of thirty-two …” BROADWAY WORLD

BET Awards hope to provide closure with Whitney Houston tribute: “While attention has turned to what the BET Awards, which air live Sunday, have planned to honor Houston, executives couldn’t help but recall 2009’s telecast that had to be revamped following the passing of Michael Jackson. ‘I empathize with the Grammys a lot, to have that type of tragedy a day, or two days, before your show really changes your whole perspective,’ said Debra Lee, chairman and chief executive of BET. ‘Michael died on that Thursday [before the Sunday telecast], so we really didn’t have many weekdays to turn it around. But it was a labor of love. The Grammys did a good job. LL Cool J was really great,’ Lee said. ‘But it’s a thin line between turning the whole show over to someone and paying tribute to him.'” LOS ANGELES TIMES

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