Hanks and his costars celebrate a bygone era of newspapermen, captured by the late, great Nora Ephron.
“For many years I was in love with journalism,” Nora Ephron wrote in “Journalism: A Love Story,” an essay in her 2010 collection I Remember Nothing. “I loved the city room. I loved the pack. I loved smoking and drinking scotch and playing dollar poker…I loved the speed. I loved the deadlines…You can’t make this stuff up, I used to say.”
And so she didn’t. She didn’t make this stuff up -- most of the time, at least. We will always remember Ephron’s fiction, from Sleepless in Seattle to Love, Loss, and What I Wore. But her roots in journalism, which show in the beauty of her prose and essays and books of nonfiction, never left her. This is clear in Lucky Guy, a new play by the late icon, which opened on Broadway on April 1 at the Broadhurst Theatre. In fact, the newsroom and the scotch and the deadlines were all the cast wanted to talk about. (Except, of course, for Nora Ephron. They wanted to talk about Nora Ephron.)
Lucky Guy tells the story of Mike McAlary’s (Tom Hanks) rise from hack sportswriter to Pulitzer Prize-winning crime columnist, during the tabloid wars of the ‘80s and ‘90s. McAlary had swagger. He had a bit of an ego. He was tough. But he wasn’t detached. He quoted dialogue between the police and the convicts. He made crime reporting personal. Nora Ephron captured his life in what is likely to be the biggest play of the Broadway season – starring Tom Hanks and directed by George C. Wolfe.