Norbert Leo Butz
Bad news for Broadway-loving TV fans: HBO has chosen not to pursue a series based on the previously announced hour-long pilot The Miraculous Year, according to Deadline.com. The initial episode featured a script by Oscar and Tony winner John Logan (Red, Gladiator) and was directed by Oscar winner Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker), with a cast of theater vets led by Tony winners Norbert Leo Butz and Frank Langella.
Described as a chronicle of a New York family as seen through the eyes of Terry Segal, a charming yet self-destructive Broadway composer (Butz), The Miraculous Year was widely assumed to be based on the life of Stephen Sondheim, with whom Logan collaborated on the screen adaptation of Sweeney Todd. (After Sondheim made his displeasure known, certain biographical details were reportedly changed.)
In a recent Q&A with Broadway.com, cast member Patti LuPone described the show as being “about a very prominent arts family in New York. The father, Frank Langella is a famous painter. His son, Norbert Leo Butz, is a genius musical theater composer. His daughter, Hope Davis, is a corporate lawyer, married with two kids. That’s one story. The other story is Norbert’s theatrical life, and I’m his leading lady.”
In addition to Langella, Butz, LuPone and Davis, the cast of The Miraculous Year also included Tony winner Eddie Redmayne (Red), Linus Roache (now appearing off-Broadway in Middletown), American Idiot star Stark Sands and TV and Braodway vet Daniel Davis (The Nanny, La Cage aux Folles). Composer Adam Guettel (The Light in the Piazza), was reportedly on board to pen the music to The Miraculous Yea's show-within-a-show musical. Guest stars in the pilot included Susan Sarandon and Lee Pace.
Sources told Deadline.com that the appeal of the show was considered “too narrow.”