Bradley Cooper is set to play John Merrick in a production of Bernard Pomerance's THE ELEPHANT MAN at the Williamstown Theatre Festival July 25 to August 5. Scott Ellis will direct and Patricia Clarkson will feature in the cast.
Cooper will be seen next in "The Words" and, later this year, in "The Place Beyond the Pines" and "The Silver Linings Playbook." His film credits include "The Hangover Part II," "Limitless," "Valentine's Day," "He's Just Not That Into You," "Yes Man," "Failure to Launch" and "Wedding Crashers."
The Elephant Man is the story of John Merrick, a young man in England at the turn of the century, who suffered from a hideous and debilitating disorder. Merrick is taken into the care of Dr. Treves, the most prominent physician of that time. Despite his profound disability and bizarre appearance, it is revealed that Merrick is an incredible artist and poet. These qualities are only surpassed by the compassion of his luminous soul, and he deeply touches the lives of everyone with whom he comes into contact.
Originally presented at London’s National Theatre, the play later opened on Broadway. Along with the 1979 Tony Award for Best Play, The Elephant Man won the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding New Play, and the NY Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play. The original Broadway cast included Philip Anglim as John Merrick (winner of the NY Drama Desk Award for Best Actor), and Kevin Conway as Dr. Treves. The role of John Merrick was later played by Mark Hamill and David Bowie, among others. The play ran over two years on Broadway.
You can read the full Williamstown Festival Summer Programme here