West End actors banned by US Equity

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The Independent Online
Janet McTeer's acclaimed West End portrayal of Nora in Ibsen's A Doll's House may now not be seen in New York after a fierce row broke out between the play's British producers and American Equity.

The US actors' union has banned three of Miss McTeer's co-stars, Owen Teale, John Carlisle and Peter Gowan, saying the parts could be played by American actors. Miss McTeer (right) has been granted permission to act on Broadway. Both Miss McTeer and Owen Teale have been nominated for Olivier Awards for their performances.

The show's producer, Thelma Holt, said there was no way she could let the production transfer without the three performers in question.

She added: "One of the reasons we have been given is that it's not an English play so you don't need English actors. How ridiculous." Fellow West End producer Bill Kenwright, who was set to spend $1m taking the production to New York, said: "It's a mindblowing decision. I thought they would welcome us with open arms."

Mr Kenwright will be appealing to American Equity. He had already made an application for an exchange procedure, by which he would bring three American actors into a London production.