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To Kill a Mockingbird Named Best-Loved Novel in America

Aaron Sorkin’s new play on Broadway is based on Harper Lee’s beloved novel.

Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird, on which Aaron Sorkin's new play of the same title is based, has been named America's best-loved novel. The announcement came in the finale of the PBS series The Great American Read, where Sorkin and stars Jeff Daniels (Atticus Finch), LaTanya Richardson Jackson (Calpurnia), and Gbenga Akinnagbe (Tom Robinson) were on hand to celebrate:

Aaron Sorkin celebrates To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.
Aaron Sorkin celebrates Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird.
(© Stephanie Berger)

The production, directed by Bartlett Sher, will begin previews Thursday, November 1, and open on Thursday, December 13, at the Shubert Theatre.

As previously reported, Daniels heads the cast as Atticus Finch, alongside Celia Keenan-Bolger (Scout), Will Pullen (Jem), Gideon Glick (Dill), Danny Wolohan (Arthur "Boo" Radley), Frederick Weller (Bob Ewell), Akinnagbe (Tom Robinson), Stark Sands (Horace Gilmer), Dakin Matthews (Judge Taylor), Erin Wilhelmi (Mayella Ewell), Jackson (Calpurnia), Neal Huff, Danny McCarthy, Phyllis Somerville, and Liv Rooth.

Completing the company are Baize Buzan, Thomas Michael Hammond, Ted Koch, David Manis, Aubie Merrylees, Doron JéPaul Mitchell, Jeff Still, Shona Tucker, Rebecca Watson.

To Kill a Mockingbird will have scenic design by Miriam Buether, costume design by Ann Roth, lighting design by Jennifer Tipton, sound design by Scott Lehrer, and an original score by Adam Guettel.

Written during the early stages of the civil rights movement — at a time when Jim Crow laws were still in effect in many Southern states — and first published in 1960, To Kill a Mockingbird held up a mirror to the ingrained culture of racism in the Deep South. Lee's debut novel earned immediate acclaim, winning the Pulitzer Prize for fiction and getting published in 10 languages within a year of its release. To Kill a Mockingbird is now considered one of the classics of modern American literature, with 50 million copies in print to date.