*Angela Bassett has signed on to replace Halle Berry in the forthcoming Broadway production of The Mountaintop, which stars Samuel L Jackson as civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. on the night before his 1968 assassination.
As previously reported, Berry had to pull out of the project in April because of child custody issues. Bassett will now take over the role of a mysterious maid named Camae who visits King at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis the night before his death.
Performances of the Katori Hall play are scheduled to start in September at the Bernard B Jacobs Theatre, with an official opening set for Oct. 13.
The project, however, means Bassett will have to withdraw from the Pasadena Playhouse’s planned fall production of the play “Pastoral,” by Frank Tangredi.
According to the Los Angeles Times, “Pastoral” was originally scheduled to have its world premiere at the Pasadena Playhouse in November, with Bassett in the lead role as a pastor facing multiple crises.
Sheldon Epps, the artistic director of the playhouse, said in an email that the company leaders are “examining our options and may adjust our production schedule so that Angela can do the play with us in the future. I do of course wish her great success with the Broadway production.”
“The Mountaintop” is a work of speculative history centering on Martin Luther King Jr. on the night before he is assassinated. Bassett will play a mysterious maid named Camae who visits King at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis.