The Tony Award nominations included lots of surprises. Although "American Idiot" has been widely perceived to be the front-runner to win best musical on June 13, its actors, choreographer and director were snubbed by the nominating committee. In the category of best play, "Enron" had been up for London's equivalent to the Tony, the Olivier Award but it isn't on the Tonys list of nominees.
Instead, "In the Next Room or the Vibrator Play," which closed in January, reaped a bid for best play. However, its lead star, Laura Benanti, wasn't recognized for her performance and its director was snubbed too. Among nominees for best play, only two are represented in the helmer's race -- "Next Fall" and "Red" -- thus making them the presumed front-runners to win. Only two contenders for best musical made the list for best director -- "Fela!" and "Memphis" -- although "American Idiot" could still prevail in that contest.
Hollywood's big stars are often snubbed due to Broadway snobbery on America's opposite coast. That probably explains the omission of Hugh Jackman and Daniel Craig ("A Steady Rain"), but nonetheless Catherine Zeta-Jones ("A Little Night Music"), Denzel Washington ("Fences), Kelsey Grammer ("La Cage aux Folles") and Jude Law ("Hamlet") nabbed noms. The inclusion of Law is especially surprising for two reasons. First, the New York Times blasted his performance. Secondly: since the role of William Shakespeare's Danish prince usually gets overlooked. There have been more than a dozen productions of "Hamlet" on Broadway since the Tonys launched around World War II. Only two lead performances reaped bids. Richard Burton (1964) lost; Ralph Fiennes (1995) won. Curiously, the current "Hamlet" is not nominated for best revival of a play.
Tony voters usually prefer Broadway veterans over Hollywood celebs, but "The Addams Family" stars Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth – both two-time past winners – were skunked. That was probably due to a lack of general appreciation for "Addams Family," which failed to be nommed for best musical. Past winner Kristin Chenoweth also was snubbed, although her "Promises, Promises" costar, Hollywood celeb Sean Hayes, did get nominated. "Promises" was bounced from the lineup for best musical revival by the long-closed "Ragtime."
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST PLAY
"A Behanding in Spokane"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST MUSICAL
"The Addams Family"
"Come Fly Away"
"Sondheim on Sondheim"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST REVIVAL OF A PLAY
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST REVIVAL OF A MUSICAL
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST ACTOR IN A MUSICAL
John Gallagher Jr., "American Idiot"
Nathan Lane, "The Addams Family"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL
Kristin Chenoweth, "Promises, Promises"
Bebe Neuwirth, "The Addams Family"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST FEATURED ACTOR IN A MUSICAL
Charlie Neshyba-Hodges, "Come Fly Away"
John Selya, "Come Fly Away"
Stark Sands, "American Idiot"
Tony Vincent, "American Idiot"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST FEATURED ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL
Rebecca Naomi Jones, "American Idiot"
Terri White, "Finian’s Rainbow"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST ACTOR IN A PLAY
Patrick Breen, "Next Fall"
Daniel Craig, "A Steady Rain"
Norbert Leo Butz, "Enron"
Hugh Jackman, "A Steady Rain"
Tony Shalhoub, "Lend Me a Tenor"
James Spader, "Race"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST ACTRESS IN A PLAY
Laura Benanti, "In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play"
Carrie Fisher, "Wishful Drinking"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST FEATURED ACTOR IN A PLAY
Eric Bogosian, "Time Stands Still"
Chris Chalk, "Fences"
Denton Michael Cristofer, "A View From the Bridge"
Brian d'Arcy James, "Time Stands Still"
Tony Roberts, "The Royal Family"
Reg Rogers, "The Royal Family"
Mykelti Williamson, "Fences"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST FEATURED ACTRESS IN A PLAY
Zoe Kazan, "A Behanding in Spokane"
Marrin Mazzie, "Enron"
Sarah Paulsen, "Collected Stories"
Connie Ray, "Next Fall"
Alicia Silverstone, "Time Stands Still"
Kerry Washington, "Race"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST DIRECTOR OF A MUSICAL
James Lapine, "Sondheim on Sondheim"
Michael Mayer, "American Idiot"
Trevor Nunn, "A Little Night Music"
Twyla Tharp, "Come Fly Away"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST DIRECTOR OF A PLAY
Rupert Goold, "Enron"
Doug Hughes, "The Royal Family"
Daniel Sullivan, "Time Stands Still"
Stanley Tucci, "Lend Me a Tenor"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST MUSICAL SCORE
"The Royal Family"
NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST BOOK OF A MUSICAL
"The Addams Family"