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Finishing The Picture - Finborough Theatre

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

FINISHING The Picture, Arthur Miller’s final work, receives its European premiere at the Finborough Theatre, where it runs from Tuesday, June 12 to Saturday, July 7, 2018.

It follows multi-award-winning director Phil Willmott’s critically acclaimed, up-close reinvention of Arthur Miller’s Incident at Vichy and sell-out revival of The American Clock.

She is frightened and resentful and angry – and we’ve got about half an hour to cure all three.

As the women of today’s Hollywood campaign for dignity and equality, Finishing the Picture is a razor sharp psychological study of an abused, misunderstood female star and the havoc her unpredictability brings to a film set in 1961.

Inspired by the filming of The Misfits, the screenplay Miller wrote for his then wife, Marilyn Monroe, and focused on the bemused and exasperated director, screen writer, producer, acting coaches and crew that closely mirror the real life production team of The Misfits – while leading lady Kitty shares many characteristics with Monroe herself – Finishing the Picture is a devastating indictment of how a male-dominated movie industry inadvertently destroyed a vulnerable young woman, even as they transformed her into a screen goddess, and how they were unable to deal with the wreckage they caused.

This UK premiere is only the play’s second production anywhere in the world, following its original large-scale premiere at Chicago’s Goodman Theatre in 2004, shortly before the playwright’s death.

The cast includes Patrick Bailey (as Terry Case), Stephen Billington (Derek Clemson), Jeremy Drakes (Paul), Nicky Goldie (Flora Fassinger), Rachel Handshaw (Edna Meyers), Oliver Le Sueur (Philip Oschner) and Tony Wredden (Jerome Fassinger).

Playwright Arthur Miller (1915-2005) was inarguably one of the greatest American dramatists of the twentieth century with a career that spanned over seven decades.

His plays include The Man Who Had All The Luck (1940), All My Sons (1947), Death of a Salesman (1949), The Crucible (1953), A View from the Bridge (1955), A Memory of Two Mondays (1955), After the Fall (1964), Incident at Vichy (1964), recently presented at the Finborough Theatre also directed by Phil Wilmott, The Price (1968), The Creation of the World and Other Business (1972), The Archbishop’s Ceiling (1977), The American Clock (1980), also recently presented at the Finborough Theatre and directed by Phil Wilmott, Playing for Time (1980), The Last Yankee (1991), The Ride Down Mount Morgan (1991), Broken Glass (1994), Mr Peter’s Connections (1998), Resurrection Blues (2002) and Finishing the Picture (2004).

Alongside his innovative reinterpretations of the classics, musical theatre revivals and new musical development, Phil Willmott’s notable productions of contemporary and recent drama include F**cking Men (Finborough Theatre, Kings Head Theatre and West End), Liza, Liza, Liza (UK tour for Bill Kenwright), Billy Liar, Athol Fugard’s Master Harold… and the Boys (Liverpool Playhouse), Angels in America and Kiss of the Spider Woman (Crucible Theatre, Sheffield), The American Clock, The Notebook of Trigorin, Country Magic, Crime and Punishment, The Lower Depths, The Grapes of Wrath, Trelawny of the Wells and Loyalties (Finborough Theatre), Fear and Misery of the Third Reich, Three Sisters in a version by Tracy Letts, Heartbreak House and The Cherry Orchard (Union Theatre) and Encounter, a new gay love story inspired by Brief Encounter (Above the Stag Theatre).

For more information or to book tickets, call the box office on 01223 357851 or visit www.finboroughtheatre.co.uk/.