Get ready for a busy fall on Broadway! There’s great drama ahead, with plenty of star power on display in classics and an array of new plays and musicals. As we perused the list of upcoming shows, a trend emerged: Most feature an exciting match-up of co-stars, directors or playwrights. Check out our cheat sheet to a dozen notable pairings headed to the Great White Way:
Orlando Bloom and Condola Rashad, Romeo and Juliet
In one of the most intriguing matchups of the fall season, movie star Orlando Bloom and two-time Tony nominee Condola Rashad bring their talent and all-around gorgeousness to Broadway in a modern staging of Shakespeare’s tragic story of forbidden love—and somehow a motorcycle is involved. In previews at the Richard Rodgers Theatre; opens on September 19.
Cherry Jones and Zachary Quinto, The Glass Menagerie
The mother-daughter pairing of Cherry Jones and Celia Keenan-Bolger is sure to be heartbreaking, but we can’t wait to see Jones and Zachary Quinto butt heads as Amanda and Tom Wingfield. When Doubt’s stern Sister Aloysius meets Angels in America’s angry Louis, sparks should fly. Starts September 5 at the Booth Theatre; opens on September 26.
Norbert Leo Butz and Susan Stroman, Big Fish
In the two decades since she won the first of her five Tonys, visionary director/choreographer Susan Stroman has guided new musicals and revivals of all sizes and subjects. In Big Fish, she’ll reunite with the larger-than-life leading man who got his start in her production of Thou Shalt Not, and who can do anything she dreams up: two-time Tony winner Norbert Leo Butz. Starts September 5 at the Neil Simon Theatre; opens on October 6.
Roger Rees and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, The Winslow Boy
The return of Oscar and Tony nominee Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio to the New York stage after more than a decade is a happy event—and so is her pairing with Tony winner Roger Rees as parents defending their son’s honor in Terence Rattigan’s enduringly popular 1946 drama. Great, great casting! Starts September 20 at the American Airlines Theatre; opens on October 17.
Sebastian Arcelus and John Douglas Thompson, A Time to Kill
Stage and TV nice guy Sebastian Arcelus gets an Atticus Finch-ish role in this John Grisham adaptation—and a topnotch co-star, classical actor John Douglas Thompson. After playing King Lear, Othello and O’Neill’s Emperor Jones off-Broadway, Thompson gets a breakout role as Arcelus’ client in a blockbuster murder trial. Starts September 28 at the Golden Theatre; opens on October 20.
Mary-Louise Parker and Sharr White, The Snow Geese
The skill with which (male) playwright Sharr White taps into the female psyche brought Laurie Metcalf a Best Actress Tony nomination last season in The Other Place. Now, White has attracted Tony winner Mary-Louise Parker to play a widowed, newly penniless (but unbowed!) matriarch in his new play, The Snow Geese. Starts October 1 at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre; opens on October 24.
Daniel Craig and Rachel Weisz, Betrayal
What could be better than watching one of the sexiest married couples on earth play a married couple on stage, in a modern classic about a ruinous affair? Daniel Craig and Rachel Weisz lend their star power to the second Broadway revival of Betrayal, with Rafe Spall completing Harold Pinter’s love triangle, directed by Mike Nichols. Starts October 1 at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre; opens on October 27.
Fantasia Barrino and Warren Carlyle, After Midnight
Each half of this pairing is noteworthy: Fantasia for her return to Broadway six years after a triumphant run in The Color Purple, and director/choreographer Carlyle for breathing new life into Duke Ellington’s Cotton Club Parade at Encores! Together on Broadway, who knows what magic they’ll create? Starts October 18 at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre; opens on November 3.
Mark Rylance and Mark Rylance, Twelfth Night and Richard III
The heading above is not a typo: Two-time Tony winner Mark Rylance will tackle polar opposite Shakespearean leading roles in rep this fall, leading an all-male company: beautiful heroine Olivia in Twelfth Night and evil title monarch in Richard III. Intrepid theatergoers can see both performances on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Starts October 15 at the Belasco Theatre; opens on November 10.
Jefferson Mays and Bryce Pinkham, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder
In this new Victorian-era musical, Tony winner Jefferson Mays juggles eight roles as the heirs to a Downton Abbey-type fortune. But before any of Mays' characters can claim their Earldom, they’ve got to survive murderous run-ins with distant relative Monty Navarro (Bryce Pinkham, who polished his murderousness in Ghost). Starts October 22 at the Walter Kerr Theatre; opens on November 17.
Ethan Hawke and Anne-Marie Duff, Macbeth
Yes, he’s a movie star, but Ethan Hawke has proved his Shakespearean mettle in Henry IV and a fab film of Hamlet. Now, he will fall under the spell of powerhouse British actress Anne-Marie Duff as the deadly, ambitious Macbeths, helmed by Jack O’Brien on a stage big enough to hold a castle. Plus: The witches are men! Starts October 24 at the Vivian Beaumont Theater; opens on November 21.
Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart, Waiting for Godot and No Man’s Land
Two of the greatest classical actors alive are headed to Broadway—and the fact that we get to see Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart in both Beckett’s fascinating play about nothing (or everything) and Pinter’s mysterious reunion of writers in a bar is double the fun. In support of the masters? Tony winners Billy Crudup and Shuler Hensley. Wow. Starts October 26 at the Cort Theatre; opens on November 24.
Also on tap:
The bio musical A Night With Janis Joplin starring Mary Bridget Davies, which opens on October 10 at the Lyceum Theatre; and Billy Crystal’s solo show 700 Sundays, which opens on November 13 at the Imperial.