When thinking about theatre, in or out of Hollywood, heartthrob George Clooney’s name does not appear anywhere on one’s list of considerations. However, the director of the Ides of March and the star of The Descendants will appear in a one night (only) reading of the play “8” at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre (in Los Angeles) on March 3, 2012. Written by Oscar-winning screenwriter of Milk Dustin Lance Black, “8″ is a response to the federal trial that overturned Proposition 8 (California Marriage Protection Act) thus eliminating the rights of same-sex couples to marry.
“It is astonishing that gay and lesbian Americans are still treated as second-class citizens,” Clooney said in a statement. “I am confident that, very soon, the laws of this nation will reflect the basic truth that gay and lesbian people — like all human beings — are born equal in dignity and rights.” Clooney, along with Brad Pitt, Matt Damon & Jerry Weintrab, is a founder of Not On Our Watch, a foundation whose mission is “ focus global attention and resources towards putting an end to mass atrocities around the world.”
The proceeds of the play – whose tickets are rumoured to sell for up to $500 each on the black market – will go to the American Foundation for Equal Rights, which was founded by Reiner and Black.
Following the L.A. reading of the play, “8″ will be produced in New York City with a cast that features Morgan Freeman, John Lithgow, Ellen Barkin, Christine Lahti, Bradley Whitford, Bob Balaban, Yeardley Smith, Matthew Bomer, Cheyenne Jackson and Reiner.