Broadway’s ‘Hillary And Clinton’ Finds Its Barack; ‘Veep’ Vet To Play Mark Penn

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The Broadway-bound Hillary and Clinton has completed its casting, tapping Broadway vet Peter Francis James as “Barack” and Wet Hot American Summer‘s Zak Orth as Hillary’s campaign manager “Mark,” as in Penn.

The two join the previously announced title stars of the play, Laurie Metcalf and John Lithgow.

Produced by Scott Rudin, who announced the casting, and directed by Joe Mantello, playwright Lucas Hnath’s Hillary and Clinton begins performances March 16, 2019, at Broadway’s John Golden Theatre. The official opening night is April 18.

The play goes behind closed doors in the state of New Hampshire during the early days of 2008, as former First Lady Hillary is in a desperate bid to save her troubled campaign against Barack for President of the United States. Husband Bill sees things one way, while campaign manager Mark sees them another.

Perhaps explaining the lack of surnames in the official description, the production further notes: “If any of this sounds familiar, don’t be fooled; in a universe of infinite possibilities, anything that can happen, will. In Hillary and Clinton, Hnath examines the politics of marriage, gender roles, and the limitations of experience and inevitability in this profoundly timely look at an American dynasty in crisis.”

James has appeared on Broadway in Present Laughter, The Merchant of Venice, On Golden Pond, Drowning Crow, and Judgment at Nuremberg, and played Colin Powell in Off Broadway’s Stuff Happens. TV and film credits include Law & Order: SVU, Gossip Girl, Third Watch, The Pack and others.

Orth’s theater credits Lincoln Center Theater’s Suburbia, as well as productions for the Roundabout and Steppenwolf, while film and TV appearances include roles in the Wet Hot American Summer franchise, Hulu’s Casual, and Veep, The Good Wife and Nurse Jackie, among others.

Playwright Hnath made his Broadway debut last year with A Doll’s House, Part 2, starring Metcalf.

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