"Suddenly Susan" star Brooke Shields will take on the horror classic about a demonically possessed child; maybe the audience will be the ones hurling this time
Bust out the pea soup — "The Exorcist" is coming to the stage, and it's bringing Brooke Shields and Richard Chamberlain with it.
Shields and Chamberlain will star in director John Doyle's stage adaptation of the horror classic "The Exorcist," which opens at the Geffen Playhouse on July 11, with previews beginning July 3.
Doyle won a Tony Award for his production of "Sweeney Todd."
Shields will play Chris MacNeil, the mother of demonically possessed child Regan, while Chamberlain will play priest and demon expert Father Merrin, who's called upon to perform an exorcism on the child.
Ellen Burstyn and Max von Sydow played the characters in the 1973 film adaptation of the story.
Emily Yetter will play Regan, a role made famous by Linda Blair in the film.
While the concept of a stage version of "The Exorcist" might make some people's head spin or projectile vomit as if they were inhabited by Satan's spirit, playwright John Pielmeier says that this iteration of "The Exorcist" will downplay the more overtly gruesome elements of the film.
“The story of the battle between faith and evil needed no spinning heads or green vomit,” Pielmeier said. “The horror should unfold instead on a simple set with an incredible cast (which we absolutely have), and the central conflict between doubting Father Karras and the demon should be a series of debates, in which the young girl possessed is the least of the figures present.”
Hopefully, the horror will also be relegated to the stage, and not spread to the audience members as they sit aghast and wonder what they're watching.