Lucas Hnath’s new play Hillary and Clinton scored a major casting coup when the production secured Tony winners Laurie Metcalf and John Lithgow to play the title duo. Joining the pair in the forthcoming Broadway production will be Zak Orth in the role of “Mark Penn” and Peter Francis James as “Barack.” The play, which is set to open at Broadway’s John Golden Theatre on April 18, 2019, under the direction of Joe Mantello, marks playwright Hnath’s return to the Great White Way after his triumph with A Doll’s House, Part 2 in 2017.
Zak Orth has made his name on the stage and on the screen. His stage credits include The Pain and the Itch (Steppenwolf Theatre Company); Suburbia (Lincoln Center Theater); and George Bernard Shaw’s Misalliance and Major Barbara (Roundabout Theatre Company). Moviegoers will remember him from Wet Hot American Summer, In & Out, and Romeo + Juliet. Among his many television credits, Orth appeared on Hulu’s Casual, USA’s Falling Water, both seasons of the Netflix prequel Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp, and the subsequent Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later. and NBC’s Revolution, as well as episodes of Veep, The Good Wife, 30 Rock, Fringe, and Nurse Jackie.
Peter Francis James has appeared on Broadway in Present Laughter, The Merchant of Venice, On Golden Pond, Drowning Crow, and Judgment at Nuremberg. His Off-Broadway credits include The Winters Tale, Edward Albee’s The Lady from Dubuque, Cymbeline, and his Obie, Drama Desk, and Lucille Lortel Award-winning turn as Colin Powell in Stuff Happens. James has enjoyed recurring roles on television’s Law & Order: SVU and has appeared in episodes of Gossip Girl, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Law & Order, Guiding Light, and Third Watch. Film credits include Double Platinum, Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Hamlet, The American Experience, and The Pack.
“Behind closed doors in the state of New Hampshire during the early days of 2008, a former First Lady named Hillary (Metcalf) is in a desperate bid to save her troubled campaign for President of the United States against Barack (James). Her husband, Bill (Lithgow), sees things one way; her campaign manager, Mark (Orth), sees things another. If any of this sounds familiar, don’t be fooled; in a universe of infinite possibilities, anything that can happen, will. In Hillary and Clinton, Hnath examines the politics of marriage, gender roles, and the limitations of experience and inevitability in this profoundly timely look at an American dynasty in crisis.”
Mark Robinson is the author of the two-volume encyclopedia The World of Musicals, The Disney Song Encyclopedia, and The Encyclopedia of Television Theme Songs. He maintains a theater and entertainment blog at markrobinsonwrites.com.