The National Theatre has announced full casting for David Hare’s Stuff Happens, which returns to the National Theatre on Wednesday 6 July 2016, the day the Chilcot Inquiry report is published.
Julian Sands will play the role of Tony Blair (pictured), with Corey Johnson as Dick Cheney and Danny Sapani as Colin Powell. Gunnar Cauthery, William Chubb, John Paul Connolly, Andrew Havill, Charlotte Lucas, Martin McDougall and Tony Turner complete the cast of the rehearsed reading.
As previously announced, Alex Jennings returns to the role of George W Bush, and is joined by original cast members Adjoa Andoh (Condoleeza Rice), Isla Blair, Iain Mitchell and Raad Rawi, along with Tom Colley, Anton Lesser, Bill Nighy (Narrator), Simon Paisley Day, Sirine Saba and Nicholas Woodeson (Donald Rumsfeld).
Stuff happens… and it’s untidy, and freedom’s untidy, and free people are free to make mistakes and commit crimes and do bad things.
The American Secretary of Defence, Donald Rumsfeld’s famous response to the looting of Baghdad, at a press conference in April 2003, provided the title for a David Hare play premiered at the NT in 2004 exploring the extraordinary process leading up to the invasion of Iraq.
David Hare’s Stuff Happens returns for one night only on 6 July to mark the publication of the long awaited Chilcot Inquiry report. Hare will direct a rehearsed reading of his landmark production about the diplomatic process that lead to the invasion of Iraq.
Playwright David Hare said:
“In 2004 Nicholas Hytner said the National Theatre could not call itself by that name if it did not have a play about the invasion of Iraq in that calendar year. He was right. And now twelve years later, when the inquiry into those events is to be published, it seems appropriate to mark the event by presenting the play which first laid out the diplomatic process leading to the most controversial foreign policy decision of my life-time.”
Originally directed by Hytner in 2004, the cast included Alex Jennings who returns to the NT playing the pivotal role of George W Bush. Describing Jennings’ performance in 2004, the Daily Telegraph said Alex captured Bush’s ‘folksy charm as well as that alarming combination of dimness and dangerous certainty.’
Rufus Norris, Director of the NT, said: “In 2004 Stuff Happens shone a light on a new approach to political theatre. It was funny, moving, fascinating and crucially, politically impactful. The significance of the work remains today. The choice to stage a rehearsed reading on the day the Chilcot Inquiry publishes was deliberate; to remind audiences how important this piece remains twelve years later.”
Stuff Happens, 6 July 2016, 7.30pm in the Lyttelton Theatre. All tickets are priced £10 and are now sold out.