Scariest Thing About the Addams Family Musical Is the Review

Richard Lawson · 04/09/10 10:32AM

Ben Brantley, grand doyenne of New York Times theater criticism, reviewed the new Nathan Lane/Bebe Neuwirth Addams Family musical today and boyyy did he hate it. It's one of the most scathing theater reviews we've read in a long while.

Can We Live in a World Without Brangelina?

Maureen O'Connor · 01/25/10 04:18AM

Brad's brother thinks something's rotten in the state of Brangelina, but other rumors conflict. Jersey Shore drives a hard bargain and risks getting shut out. Gary Coleman gets arrested. ScarJo on stage gets a rave review. Monday gossip starts now.

Happy Birthday

cityfile · 10/26/09 06:53AM

Hillary Clinton turns 62 today. Julian Schnabel is turning 58. Dylan McDermott is 48. Napoleon Dynamite's Jon Heder is turning 32. Keith Urban is 42. Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane is turning 36. Rita Wilson is 53. Novelist Marisha Pessl is 32. Times theater critic Ben Brantley turns 55. Singer Natalie Merchant is turning 46. Jaclyn Smith of Charlie's Angels fame is 62. And game show host Pat Sajak turns 63 today.

Theater Critics Lack Job Skills To Survive Depression

Alex Carnevale · 11/01/08 09:00AM

New York Post theater columnist Michael Riedel loves to twist the knife into a failing production, and this morning he can't help himself. The staged failure in question is an irrelevant, overpriced disaster that struggles along slowly where its competition surges on. This horrorshow is the dramatic plight of the newspaper theater critic, a production that should have themes that resonate with Riedel's job status, but the controversial Broadway observer doesn't see the irony in writing trend pieces that might leave him unemployed. Does the world really need Ben Brantley (left), or Michael Riedel, for that matter?Critics are taking buyouts right and left, with the The Star-Ledger parting ways with two longtime writers who reviewed for more than a decade in their pages. The financial climate for new productions is one reason for cutbacks, but there's just not much need for a critic when bloggers have the attention of the industry. "Most people can't tell the difference between Wayman Wong [a blogger] and Ben Brantley. And, frankly, I'd rather read Wayman," a producer tells Riedel. It's not just the cutbacks, it's the brutal humiliation they've suffered in having to do the job:

Happy Birthday

cityfile · 10/24/08 06:04AM

Fashion star Zac Posen celebrates his 28th birthday today. Actor Kevin Kline is 61. Law & Order's B.D. Wong is 48. R&B singer Monica is turning 28. Shenae Grimes of 90210 is 19. Your favorite bisexual MTV personality, Tila Tequila, is 27. And Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich celebrates his 42nd birthday today. Weekend birthdays after the jump.

Ben Brantley

cityfile · 02/03/08 09:38PM

Brantley is the chief theater critic for the Times.

abalk · 07/25/07 01:50PM

Theater critic Ben Brantley is unwell: "I came down with food poisoning yesterday afternoon. I'll spare you the cause and consequences." All we need now is for Dwight Garner to run a photo of himself in a Speedo and we're declaring victory on behalf of blogland. [NYT]

Frank "Bigfoot" Rich

Gawker · 01/16/03 11:36AM

A culture writer on Frank Rich's new position as Associate Editor for the NYT's Arts & Leisure section: I wouldn t want to be Ben Brantley or anybody else in Frank s line of fire...Bigfoot is his middle name.
Nouveau Rich [NY Magazine]