Matthew Broderick to Make London Stage Debut in Kenneth Lonergan's 'The Starry Messenger'

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Broderick will play an astronomer in the comic-drama, starring opposite Elizabeth McGovern from 'Downton Abbey.'

Matthew Broderick is set to make his West End debut in The Starry Messenger, an original play by Manchester by the Sea writer-director Kenneth Lonergan.

Broderick is returning to the role of Mark Williams, which he first performed in an off-Broadway production for the New Group in 2009. He will star opposite Downton Abbey's Elizabeth McGovern.

The play is described as a "bittersweet comic-drama" that follows an astronomer at New York City's planetarium who grows distant from his job and wife due to a desire to explore his infinite connection to the vastness of the universe.

Broderick, still widely known for his memorable starring role in Ferris Bueller's Day Off, has remained active on stage throughout his career. He won a Tony Award for best featured actor in 1983 for his performance in the Neil Simon play Brighton Beach Memoirs, and landed a Tony for lead actor in a musical in 1995 for How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. He was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame in 2017.

He has a long association with Lonergan, having appeared in the Oscar-winning writer-director's films You Can Count on Me, Margaret and Manchester by the Sea.

Directed by Sam Yates and produced by Simon Friend, Act Productions, Gavin Kalin and Howard Panter, The Starry Messenger will open at Wyndham's Theatre in Covent Garden on May 16 and run for a 13-week engagement.

Lonergan's older work has been frequently produced on Broadway of late, including This Is Our Youth in 2014, Lobby Hero last year and The Waverly Gallery in a current production due to wrap Jan. 27, starring Elaine May, Lucas Hedges, Joan Allen and Michael Cera.