Last summer reports were made that said Diahann Carroll and Denzel Washington were going to be starring in a revival of A Raisin in the Sun . Just a few weeks ago, we learned that Carroll had to drop out and that LaTanya Richardson Jackson, Samuel L. Jackson’s wife is set to take her place. Richardson Jackson was last on Broadway in 2009 when she starred in “Joe Turner’s Come and Gone.” Carroll, who is 78, withdrew from the production, because of rigorous demands for the rehearsal and performance schedule.
At 64, Richardson Jackson is five years older than Washington, 59, who will be playing her son. Washington was last on Broadway in the 2010 production of “Fences” for which he won a Tony for lead actor. Richardson Jackson said, “This is not even serendipitous. This is a miracle. This is an incredible dream. I could cry, but I don’t have time.”
Richardson Jackson’s off Broadway credits include “From the Mississippi Delta” and “The Talented Tenth” and her TV roles have included parts on “Ally McBeal” and “100 Centre Street.” She appeared in the films “Sleepless in Seattle” and “Malcolm X .” Denzel said, “Listen, she’s already in there killing it. She’s already pushing me so that’s good. I’m happy that she’s here.”
“A Raisin in the Sun” starts on March 8 at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre and opening night is April 3. The productions will also star Denzel Washington, Sophie Okonedo and Anika Noni Rose.
This will be the second Broadway revival of Lorraine Hansberry’s play. The original featured Sidney Poitier and Ruby Dee and the 2004 version starred Diddy, Phylicia Rashad, Sanaa Lathan and was directed by Kenny Leon.