Max Schumacher

National Theatre announces Douglas Henshall is to play Max Schumacher in the world-premiere of NETWORK

This autumn the National Theatre will stage the world-premiere of Network, Lee Hall’s new adaptation of the Oscar-winning film by Paddy Chayefsky.

Directed by Ivo van Hove, the cast also includes Tony award winner Bryan Cranston as Howard Beale, and Michelle Dockery as Diana Christenson.

Speaking about Network Douglas said “I’m thrilled to be coming back to the National and in particular working with Ivo Van Hove, I’ve always been a huge fan of the film and I can’t wait to be a part of it.”

Howard Beale, news anchor-man, isn’t pulling in the viewers. In his final broadcast he unravels live on screen. But when the ratings soar, the network seizes on their new found populist prophet, and Howard becomes the biggest thing on TV.

Network depicts a dystopian media landscape where opinion trumps fact. Hilarious and horrifying by turns, the iconic film by Paddy Chayefsky won four Academy Awards in 1976. Now, Lee Hall (Billy Elliot, Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour) and director Ivo van Hove (Hedda Gabler) bring his masterwork to the stage for the first time, with Bryan Cranston (All the Way, for which he won the Tony for Best Actor, Breaking Bad and Trumbo for which he was nominated for an Oscar) in the role of Howard Beale.

Set and lighting design by Jan Versweyveld, video design by Tal Yarden, costume design by An D’Huys, music and sound design by Eric Sleichim.

A very limited number of additional on stage seats will be released in the autumn – see the NT website for more information.

Network is produced in association with Patrick Myles, David Luff, Ros Povey and Lee Menzies.

Previews from 4 November, press night 13 November, continuing in the repertoire until 24 March