We are happy and grateful — and fascinated — to have received a guest post with new information on A Man For All Seasons. For the review of the production this blog is responding to, see my review here. It helps me understand why the production seemed somewhat flat to me … how about you? YK
… once the script leaves the playwright’s hands …
The original play had a character in it called “The Common Man” who showed up in various different disguises, such as a river boatman, etc., and constantly commented on More’s impeccable and self-sacrificing conduct with words that basically expressed the thought, “Yeah, right, but still I gotta go home and feed the missus and walk the dog, so I gotta do what I can do to earn a living!” and such. This character was cut from the movie script, and for some reason the people who presented the new production at Roundabout decided to keep that cut in place. In my opinion they made a great mistake, and I would not have allowed it, were it up to me — which it was not. I guess they all thought he was irrelevant — leave the audience to think that — but he wasn’t. This character kept saying everything you and I — and the audience was thinking: things like “Like man, give them what they want and go home to that great woman who is waiting for you!” In my opinion they cut out, in effect, the catalytic character who made the play work!
Of related interest, see reviews here of A Man for All Seasons, and Vivat Rex! Exhibition Commemorating 500 Year Anniversary of the Accession of Henry VIII, here above.
That is so interesting. I don’t understand why they did that. I’d like to see it the way it’s described in this blog — would make it more human. Carol