London's Hot Ticket Gets Mixed Reviews

Fans shell out for McGregor's Iago, but it's the Moor who wows
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 5, 2007 8:58 PM CST
London's Hot Ticket Gets Mixed Reviews
British actor Ewan McGregor arrives at the world premiere of his latest film 'Miss Potter' in London, late Sunday, Dec. 3, 2006. McGregor may earn millions making movies, but the actor has decided to perform Shakespeare on the London stage for minimum wage. The 36-year-old star will be playing Shakespeare's...   (Associated Press)

(Newser) – The hottest ticket in London is for a production of Othello, starring Ewan McGregor in a 250-seat theater, with the price of tickets hitting $4,000 on the secondary market. Yet the play opened this week to decidedly mixed reviews. While everyone praised Chiwetel Ejiofor as the Moor of Venice, McGregor's Iago has come in for a drubbing, with one critic sniping "I'd be reluctant to part with a tenner for his performance."

"I saw better performances than this in my cub reporter days covering local reps," writes the Telegraph's Charles Spencer, who also calls McGregor "static and dull." Ejiofor, on the other hand, "puts himself into the front rank of modern Othellos," Guardian critic Michael Billington writes. Othello will not be transferring to a larger theater due to the movie commitments of its stars. (Read more Ewan McGregor stories.)

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