Andrea Martin Is 'Heartbroken' to Exit New Broadway Play After Breaking 4 Ribs During Rehearsals
"I love everyone involved in this beautiful play and will miss them profoundly," said Andrea Martin, in a statement.
Andrea Martin will no longer star in Broadway’s Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus, due to injuries related to an accident she suffered during rehearsals.
The My Big Fat Greek Wedding actress, 72, broke four ribs late last month while preparing for the Taylor Mac play — which she was supposed to be co-headlining with fellow Tony winner Nathan Lane. She continued rehearsing for a week, but producer Scott Rudin announced to PEOPLE on Monday she would no longer be able to perform the role.
Kristine Nielsen, who was also starring in the show, will now assume Martin’s role. Julie White will replace Nielsen.
“I am heartbroken to have to leave the production and have tried to convince the doctor that my funny bone is stronger than my broken ribs,” said Martin in a statement. “But regretfully, I must follow the doctor’s orders. I love everyone involved in this beautiful play and will miss them profoundly. I will be there cheering them on from the audience at the Booth Theatre.”
Added Rudin in a statement: “There is no greater company member than Andrea Martin, and we are heartsick to see her depart the production. We wish her the speediest recovery possible. We are very grateful to both Ms. Nielsen and Ms. White for stepping up and stepping in so swiftly.”
Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus tells the story of two servants (Lane and now, Neilsen) ordered to clean up the bodies after the fall of the Roman Empire in the year 400 (as told in the blood-soaked conclusion of William Shakespeare’s first tragedy, Titus Andronicus). Along the way, they run into a midwife on the verge of death (White, a 2007 Tony winner for The Little Dog Laughed).
Director George C. Wolfe also praised Martin in a statement. “Andrea is a gifted artist who has already made an indelible mark on this wonderful play which we can’t wait to share with the world,” he said.
Martin has nearly 10 Broadway credits under her belt. She last treaded the boards in the 2016 revival of Noise’s Off, and two years before that in Act One. She was also famously part of the 1972 Toronto production of Godspell, in a company that included future stars Gilda Radner, Martin Short, Eugene Levy, Victor Garber, and musical director Paul Shaffer.
Over the course of her stage career, Martin has won two Tonys, first of My Favorite Year (in 1993) and 20 years later for Pippin (in 2013). She’s been nominated three additional times.
Of course, Martin is also an accomplished film and television actress.
The Canadian native burst on to the scene when she joined then-unknowns Levy, Catherine O’Hara, John Candy, Dave Thomas, Harold Ramis and Joe Flaherty on the acclaimed sketch comedy television series, SCTV. The work would earn her her first Emmy nomination, for outstanding supporting actress in a variety showin 1981. Two Emmys would come in 1982 and 1983, both for outstanding writing in a variety or music program.
Roles on the big screen would come, including Black Christmas (1974 & the 2006 remake), Wag the Dog (1997), Hedwig and the Angry Inch (2001), The Producers (2005), Little Italy (2018) and the two My Big Fat Greek Wedding films (in 2002 and 2016, respectively).
She’s also done considerable work in animated films and television show, lending her voice to s Anastasia (1997), The Rugrats Movie (1998) Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius (2001), and Brother Bear 2 (2006), as well as American Dad, SpongeBob SquarePants, and .
Most recently, Martin spent two seasons costarring on NBC’s Great News. Other notable television also had roles in Difficult People, Modern Family, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt!, The Good Fight, and NBC’s Hairspray Live.