Keira Knightley's West End Debut in "The Misanthrope"
Actress Keira Knightley will make her West End debut in an updated version of Molière's The Misanthrope. While the original story took place in 17th century Paris, writer Martin Crimp has created an updated version of the play set in present-day London.
The Oscar-nominated actor, 24, will play an ambitious American film star, the love interest of a British playwright played by Damian Lewis. Lewis, 38, plays the "misanthrope" Alceste, who is disillusioned and angry with the hypocrisy and vanity of the contemporary world. Vowing to reject society, his plans are derailed when he falls in love with Jennifer (Knightley), a darling of the social scene.
Knightley, who's mother is a playwright, has been to several auditions in the past for various theatre roles but never secured one up until now. She has expressed apprehension in the past about performing on stage.
Knightley has admitted in the past to feeling nervous about appearing on stage. In an interview last year, the 24-year-old actress said that she planned to choose her first theatre role with care. "I can't quite handle the idea of 'Screen Actress in Big West End Hit' and all that. I would prefer to do something smaller."
Thea Sharrock, who previously directed Equus starring Daniel Radcliffe, is set to direct the new version of Molière's play.
Knightley will make her debut in The Misanthrope beginning December 17th at London's Comedy Theatre.