Oscar winner Denzel Washington is heading back to the stage, and this time he’s stepping into some really big shoes, starring in a role made famous by Sidney Poitier, in the highly anticipated Broadway revival of A Raisin in The Sun.
The show, directed by Tony Award nominee Kenny Leon, begins previews March 8 and officially opens April 3 for a 14-week limited engagement through June 15.
Washington stars alongside Academy Award nominee Sophie Okonedo, Tony winner Anika noni Rose, and LaTanya Richardson, who replaced Diahann Caroll just last week.
Washington says that since joining the cast of A Raisin in The Sun he’s met with Poitier to discuss his role.
“I went over to his house a few times and it was interesting because he started talking about it and he was like, ‘well I’m not gonna tell you what to do,’ and then he started talking about it more, and the next thing I know he’s standing up and starting to walk around,” Washington said. “He’s still passionate about it. He couldn’t remember the lines but he was very passionate about it, and that was exciting to watch.”
“I told him don’t tell me when he’s coming. I told him I’ll get him seats, but don’t tell me when he’s coming.”
Throughout his career spanning several decades, Poitier won an Oscar, two Golden Globe Awards, and a Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award, however the 86-year-old actor hasn’t appeared in a major film since 1997.
When asked at point in his career he plans on retiring from acting, 59-year-old Washington said, “Actors don’t have to retire. Theater is tough. You may have to retire from big roles at one point, but actors can still come back on stage and play smaller roles that they can handle.”
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