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Allison Williams headed skyward as NBC's Peter Pan


By FRAZIER MOORE

NEW YORK (AP) - NBC has picked its Peter Pan: high-flying "Girls" star Allison Williams.

The network announced Wednesday that Williams will play the boy who refused to grow up in NBC's new staging of "Peter Pan Live!" The live telecast of this musical classic will air Dec. 4.

The 26-year-old actress-comedian plays Marnie Michaels on HBO's comedy "Girls," for which she has recorded several songs. She is the daughter of NBC News anchor Brian Williams and has also appeared on "The Mindy Project" and "The League."

Allison Williams Will Play Peter Pan. Smart Move, Girl!


NBC recently announced that Oscar winner Christopher Walken will play the villainous pirate Captain Hook.

"I have wanted to play Peter Pan since I was about three years old, so this is a dream come true," said Williams, who added, "What could go wrong in a live televised production with simultaneous flying, sword fighting and singing?"

This musical version of "Peter Pan" has a long tradition on NBC.

It opened on Broadway in 1954, starring Mary Martin as the flying boy and Cyril Ritchard as Captain Hook in a pair of Tony Award-winning performances.

They reprised their Broadway roles in a live telecast of the production that aired on NBC in 1955, revived a year later with a second live telecast - and then, in 1960, with a new, videotaped "Peter Pan" that again starred Martin and Ritchard.

The upcoming "Peter Pan Live!" is a follow-up to the success NBC found with a live version of "The Sound of Music" in 2013 with Carrie Underwood. Neil Meron and Craig Zadan, who produced "The Sound of Music," are also working on "Peter Pan Live!"

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Jim July 30 2014 at 1:03 PM

My GOD, the world is killing each other and this is #1 on the AOL news page!
Who gives a crap?

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7 replies
rickydh1956 July 30 2014 at 1:35 PM

Mary Martin set the standard back in the 1960's during my childhood and she set the standard so high, no modern so-called actress can come close. Why not just re-show the Mary Marin classic that is always superior?

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5 replies
houndmaster July 30 2014 at 1:24 PM

Gee, I wonder if her dad, being the evening news anchor for the network, may have influenced the selection any...........just wondering.

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2 replies
Tbears houndmaster July 30 2014 at 2:11 PM

Really? Who would have thought NBC

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Torpecker houndmaster July 30 2014 at 8:25 PM

Naw. I couldn't have anything to do with it . . .

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cass July 30 2014 at 1:01 PM

Why can't an actual boy play him?

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8 replies
elobel1044 July 30 2014 at 1:08 PM

I have seen several other actresses play the part of Peter Pan and while some of them were good, NO ONE compares to Mary Martin! Perhaps NBC could male an arrangement with god and get her for one more appearance!

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1 reply
happy2bgridfree elobel1044 July 30 2014 at 1:23 PM

I saw Cathy Rigby in the role. Sorry, but I think she out-did Martin. Martin looked like a middle-aged woman dressed up as a boy. I even thought so as a kid.

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calliope1961 July 30 2014 at 3:41 PM

Well, we saw what a great job Carrie Underwood did in the role of "Maria" in NBC's "The Sound of Music." [sarcasm].

Now we have Brian Williams' daughter in the role of "Peter Pan."

I hear the network is considering doing "Fiddler on the Roof" in December 2015, with Ted Nugent starring as "Tevye."

I'm beginning to think that airing these "live" musicals is less about quality entertainment than in drawing in viewers who just want to see how BAD it can be.

Reality TV at it's worst.

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1 reply
missysmomdog calliope1961 July 30 2014 at 4:19 PM

TED Nugent as a gun toting neo-nazi Tevye! AWESOME

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1 reply
Janet Welsh missysmomdog July 30 2014 at 7:02 PM

I think Dianne Feinstein would be a better choice for a gun toting neo-nazi, Tevye!

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chefmachinist July 30 2014 at 12:58 PM

NOONE, NOON,NOONE will EVER be Peter Pan but Mary Martin.
That silhouette, shadow, voice and role belong exclusively and eternally to Mary Martin.
Good Luck, allison, but you have some enormous shoes to fill.

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5 replies
beatsynthesis July 30 2014 at 1:26 PM

Hmmmm. Too bad. Obama would have made a much better Peter Pan.

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3 replies
Steve Schiffman July 30 2014 at 1:29 PM

Clearly NBC is looking at demos rather than solid experience. There are many established "Broadway" thespians who has a background in musicals. Why continue this trend of using relatively "unknowns" as well as practicing the long-honored NBC practice of nepotism?

Did NBC hold "open auditions"? Probably not!

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1 reply
rickydh1956 Steve Schiffman July 30 2014 at 1:39 PM

They probably got this unknown dirt cheap. They should just replay the 1960's Mary Martin portrayal of Peter Pan that's superior to any other.

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rude July 30 2014 at 5:29 PM

Yeah, she's well-known alright. Just like my mailman.

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