Neil Patrick Harris, Cranston go for Tonys on Broadway's big night

Sun Jun 8, 2014 12:32pm EDT
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By Patricia Reaney

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Broadway rolls out the red carpet on Sunday for the 68th annual Tony Awards, theater's top honors, in a star-studded ceremony at New York's Radio City Music Hall with Hugh Jackman returning to host the show for the fourth time.

Clint Eastwood, Bradley Cooper and Orlando Bloom will be among those appearing while Tony nominees Neil Patrick Harris and Idina Menzel are set to perform during the show, along with Sting, who will give a preview of his upcoming Broadway debut musical "The Last Ship."

The show will be broadcast live on the CBS television network.

Forty-four productions, ranging from "Act One," an adaptation of American playwright Moss Hart's autobiography, to "Rocky," the stage version of the Oscar-winning film, opened on Broadway during the 2013/2014 season.

"It's a very even playing field, which means there is a lot of great stuff out there," said Hal Luftig, the producer of last season's Tony winning musical "Kinky Boots."

"We had a lot more shows this season," he added in an interview. "Nobody has an edge, which I think is really great."

"A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder," a comedy of manners about a would-be heir and a family inheritance, leads the competition with 10 nominations, including two for best actor in a musical and best director.

It will go head-to-head against "Beautiful - The Carole King Musical," "After Midnight" and "Aladdin" for the top musical prize.   Continued...

Actor Neil Patrick Harris meets the media after he was honored as Hasty Pudding Theatricals' Man of the Year during a roast at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, February 7, 2014.  REUTERS/Dominick Reuter