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Film and TV

Netflix releases first look at Big Bang Theory’s Jim Parsons in groundbreaking gay drama ‘The Boys in the Band’

Emma Powys Maurice August 23, 2020

Netflix has unveiled first-look pictures of its adaptation of the seminal gay stage play The Boys in the Band, starring The Big Bang Theory‘s Jim Parsons.

Parsons previously appeared in the play’s 2018 Tony award-winning Broadway revival alongside Matt Bomer, Andrew Rannells and Zachary Quinto, and the same star-studded, all-gay cast will feature in the Netflix remake developed by Ryan Murphy.

The classic story by the late, great playwright Mart Crowley follows the intertwined personal dramas of a group of gay men who meet in New York to celebrate one of their birthdays.

Parsons plays the lead character of Michael, a writer and semi-lapsed Catholic with a withering wit as sharp as Sheldon Cooper‘s. As the party’s host, Michael is the catalyst for most of the drama that ensues.

The Boys in the Band
Jim Parsons as Michael in The Boys in the Band (Netflix)

The Boys in the Band’s 1968 debut was described as “a true theatrical game-changer” as it helped spark a revolution by putting gay men’s lives onstage at a time when there were few positive portrayals available.

Speaking to Broadway in 2019, Crowley remembered how he struggled to find actors to star in the original production – a stark contrast to the number of A-listers now signed up to the project.

“It was very different back then. You could get arrested for doing the things they do in this play. It was quite awful and ridiculous and demeaning,” he said.

“Naturally, everybody’s agent told them not to do this play. We offered the roles and many turned it down. Agents said it was a career killer.”

It was originally meant to last just five performances but was extended due to huge demand. It ultimately ran for 1,001 nights and was still running off-Broadway when the Stonewall riots kicked off in 1969.

Crowley sadly died in March of this year at the age of 84, but not before he wrote the screenplay to transform his work into a Netflix production.

The feature-length film releases on Netflix on September 30.

The Boys in the Band (Netflix)
The Boys in the Band
The Boys in the Band (Netflix)

 

 

More: Jim Parsons, Mart Crowley, matt bomer, the big bang theory, the boys in the band, zachary quinto

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