Big Knife, The (2013) Production Files

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Identifier: BIGKNIFE2013
Inclusive Dates: 2013
Production Files documenting the 2013 production of Clifford Odets' The Big Knife at the American Airlines Theatre.  Directed by Doug Hughes, with set design by John Lee Beatty, costume design by Catherine Zuber, lighting design by James F. Ingalls, original music and sound design by David Van Tiegham, and hair and wig design by Tom Watson.

All in the cast were billed equally, starring Bobby Cannavale as Charlie Castle, Marin Ireland as Marion Castle, Rachel Brosnahan as Dixie Evans, Billy Eugene Jones as Russell, Joey Slotnick as Buddy Bliss, Brenda Wehle as Patty Benedict, Chip Zien as Nat Danzinger, Richard Kind as Marcus Hoff, Reg Rogers as Smiley Coy, Ana Reeder as Connie Bliss, and C.J. Wilson as Hank Teagle.  Understudies included Katya Campbell, Erika Rolfsrud, Lee Aaron Rosen, Baylen Thomas, and Mark Zeisler.

2013 Awards and Nominations:
Tony Award, Best Performance-Actor-Featured Role in a Play, Richard Kind (nominee)
Drama Desk Award, Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play, Richard Kind (winner)
In Clifford Odet's 1949 play, "Charlie Castle, Hoff-Federated [studio]'s biggest grossing film star, wants out of Hollywood...He is tired of the simple-minded roles he has been given and is unhappy watching his marriage go down the drain.  His wife Marion (who is living apart from him at their beach house) gives him an ultimatum: if he signs the new contract, she will divorce him.  Unfortunately for Charlie, the studio is holding a big knife to his throat: a previous Christmas eve, Charlie was driving drunk and killed a child in a hit-and-run accident.  The studio arranged for his publicist, the passive and loyal Buddy Bliss, to take the rap and serve six months in jail, with the concurrence of both Charlie and his wife.  If Charlie doesn't sign the new contract, the studio threatens to release to the press the true story of what happened that night.  And what Marion doesn't know is that starlet Dixie Evans was in the car that night and is dropping hints all over town.  It is endgame and we know we are seeing the rise and fall of a major film star." --Victor Gluck,

A film version of Odet's play was made in 1955, directed and produced by Robert Aldrich, starring Jack Palance as Charlie Castle.
Production Files span two Hollinger boxes consisting of 31 folders, a Playbill, some marketing flyers, the cast/family photo, and a cd with the stage management bible.

Digital holdings on the Archive 1 server include the following folders:
Big Knife emails.pdf
Costume Design (including a folder for the costume bible)
Education (a pdf transcript of director Doug Hughes' lecture, and the Upstage study guide)
Media (G&L and WINE event photos, video footage of a performance, interviews with individual actors, and opening night)
Opening Night (173 jpeg photos)
Performance Reports
Playbill (21 tiff file)
Press (Pdf files of select press)
Production Photographs (546 jpeg photos, plus captioned selects)
Stage Manager Documentation (38 folders include accident forms, contact sheets, correspondence, dramaturgy, memos, petty cash, scheduling, and technical)
Ticket Services (on sale calendar)
Copies of poster on the Poster shelves.
Contracts have been removed and housed in the Contracts cabinets; these are confidential and access is restricted.  

Roundabout Archive has a variety of costume and prop pieces from the show; all have been photographed and documented within the catalog.
Access Restrictions: Open and available to approved researchers by appointment only. See folder details for specific restrictions.
Preferred Citation: The Big Knife (2013), Roundabout Theatre Company Archive
Related Staged Production

Big Knife, The

This box contains the following folders:
Casting Sessions
Rehearsal Reports
Performance Reports
Cues, Breakdowns and Presets
Set Design
Flame Certificates
Costume Bible
Opening Night
Production Box 3 contains General Management files, including budgets, production details and set, costume, lighting and sound files.