Star-stud­ded cast presents Propo­si­tion 8 play pre­miere

The Washington Times Daily - - Life -

Martin Sheen com­manded the stage with his im­pas­sioned por­trayal of an at­tor­ney ar­gu­ing for gay-mar­riage rights; Jane Lynch in­spired in­stant re­sponse as a ve­he­ment same­sex-mar­riage op­po­nent; Brad Pitt daz­zled as a judge.

It was all part of the star-stud­ded West Coast pre­miere of “8,” a play about the 2010 fed­eral court fight against Propo­si­tion 8, the gay-mar­riage ban that Cal­i­for­nia vot­ers ap­proved in 2008.

The per­for­mance Satur­day at the Wil­shire Ebell Theatre in Los An­ge­les also fea­tured Ge­orge Clooney, Kevin Ba­con, Jamie Lee Cur­tis, Chris­tine Lahti, Ge­orge Takei, John C. Reilly, Chris Colfer, Matthew Mor­ri­son and Jesse Tyler Fer­gu­son.

The play by Os­car win­ner Dustin Lance Black made its Broad­way de­but last year in sim­i­lar starry fash­ion. Satur­day’s ben­e­fit per­for­mance was broad­cast live on Youtube, where di­rec­tor Rob Reiner said it drew 200,000 view­ers. He hopes it at­tracts more than a mil­lion be­fore its week­long on­line run ends. The play also will be staged around the coun­try with lo­cal ac­tors at col­leges and com­mu­nity the­aters.

“We want as many peo­ple as pos­si­ble to see what hap­pened in­side that court­room,” said Mr. Reiner, a found­ing mem­ber of the Amer­i­can Foun­da­tion for Equal Rights, which is fund­ing the fed­eral fight for mar­riage equal­ity.

Re­ly­ing largely on tran­scripts from court pro­ceed­ings, “8” in­tro­duces view­ers to the cou­ples who chal­lenged the Cal­i­for­nia ini­tia­tive, the at­tor­neys who ar­gued their case and a bum­bling wit­ness who spoke out against them.

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