Broadway legend Frank Langella will star in “Lapham Rising,” director Charlie Kessler’s upcoming film satire about the Hamptons.
The Hollywood Reporter on Wednesday said Langella, 79, whose lead role in Broadway’s “The Father” last year won him his fourth Tony Award, has been cast as Harry March, a misanthropic retired writer living with his highly capitalistic and evangelical talking dog, Hector. Together they object to the grandiose mansion being constructed by his rich neighbor Lapham, an asparagus-tong tycoon.
Based on the 2006 book by Time magazine and “PBS NewsHour” cultural critic Roger Rosenblatt, who wrote the screenplay, the film is scheduled to shoot in the Hamptons in early spring. The book takes place in Quogue and on March’s small nearby island, which he calls Noman (as in “Noman is an island”).
First-time feature director Kessler, a Long Island native who has worked on the crew of Marvel’s various Netflix series, has directed three shorts including “Montauk,” a seven-minute “found footage” science-fiction student film that premiered at the 2012 Hamptons International Film Festival.
Langella, who stars on FX’s “The Americans,” has appeared in countless films and earned an Academy Award nomination for his role as Richard Nixon in 2008’s “Frost/Nixon.” He won a Tony Award for the role in the original 2007 Broadway production, as well as featured-actor Tonys for 1975’s “Seascape” and 2002’s “Fortune’s Fool.” He has seven Tony nominations total, including for the title role of 1978’s “Dracula,” a role he reprised in the 1979 film.