It was announced today that Kim Cattrall has withdrawn from the forthcoming production of Linda at the Royal Court Theatre.
The Sex and the City actress was set to play the title role in Penelope Skinner’s new play, which opens at the Royal Court Theatre later this month, but last night, Wednesday 18th November, she withdrew from the production on the advice of her doctors.
The role has already been recast and will now be played by Olivier Award-winner Noma Dumezweni, who begins rehearsals for the production tomorrow, Friday 20th November.
The play is set to run at the Royal Court Theatre from 26th November 2015 to 9th January 2016, with press night on 1st December 2015.
In an official statement on the Royal Court Theatre website, Kim Cattrall said: “With great sadness and at the advice of my doctors, I will not be able to continue with the Royal Court’s production of Linda. I appreciate all the support I have received from the theatre and cannot thank them enough for allowing me to put my health first.”
Linda Wilde has dedicated her life to changing the world. She’s won awards for her efforts, at the same time as working hard to become an inspiring mother, and an independent, loving wife.
Now, at 55, she seems to have it all. But Linda isn’t satisfied. She’s a woman in her prime and she’s embarking on her most ambitious plan to date. But beneath the surface, the cracks are starting to show.
Linda is a new play written by Penelope Skinner (The Big Idea: Age, The Village Bike, The Promise, Fred’s Diner, The Sound of Heavy Rain, Greenland, Eigengrau, Fucked) and directed by Michael Longhurst (Constellations, The Art of Dying, Carmen Disruption, Bad Jews, On The Record). It also has design by Es Devlin, video design by Luke Halls, costume design by Alex Lowde, lighting design by Lee Curran and movement direction by Imogen Knight, in addition to music composition and sound by Richard Hammarton.
Starring alongside Dumezweni in the cast are Imogen Byron as Bridget, Karla Crome as Alice, Jaz Deol as Luke, Amy Beth Hayes as Amy, Dominic Mafham as Neil, Merriel Plummer as Stevie and Ian Redford as Dave.
Noma Dumezweni’s work as an actor includes Belong (Royal Court Theatre), Feast (Young Vic/Royal Court), Carmen Disruption (Almeida), ‘Tis Pity She’s A Whore (Shakespeare’s Globe), The Bogus Woman (The Red Room, Traverse and Bush theatres), President Of An Empty Room And The Hour We Knew Nothing Of Each Other (National); Macbeth, Breakfast With Mugabe, The Winter’s Tale, Romeo And Juliet (RSC) and A Raisin In The Sun (Young Vic) for which she was awarded an Olivier Award for Best Performance in a Supporting Role. In 2013-2015 she appeared in A Human Being Died That Night at the Hampstead Theatre, the Fugard Theatre in Cape Town, the Market Theatre in Johannesburg and BAM in New York. She will make her directing debut with I See You by Mongiwekhaya at the Royal Court Theatre in February 2016.
Speaking about Cattrall’s decision to step down from the production, Royal Court Theatre Artistic Director Vicky Featherstone said: “We are all deeply sorry that Kim is unable to continue with the production and she has our warmest wishes. We are extremely grateful and also thrilled that Noma Dumezweni, one of our most brilliant actors, has agreed to take on this challenge at such short notice. We are delighted that in spite of these difficulties Penelope Skinner’s important play can open to our audiences with minimal disruption.”
Linda runs at the Jerwood Theatre Downstairs, Royal Court Theatre from Thursday 26th November 2015 to Saturday 9th January 2016. Press night will be held on Tuesday 1st December 2015.