‘Funny Girl’ Producers Respond To Rumors Beanie Feldstein Blindsided Them With Sooner-Than-Expected Exit
Funny Girls producers just responded to claims that former lead star Beanie Feldstein exited earlier than scheduled.
In a statement released to People, the producers of the hit Broadway show said that Feldstein’s July 31 departure was mutually agreed upon by everyone in the team.
“The producers of Funny Girl were not blindsided by Beanie's social post. The producers decided to take the show in a different direction and end Beanie's contract on September 25th, 6 months earlier than anticipated. A month after that decision, Beanie decided it was best for her to leave on July 31st. The producers were aware of and in support of her decision. The producers and Beanie worked on this together professionally, respectfully, and graciously,” the statement read.
Prior to their clarification, initial reports revealed that Feldstein’s last day was supposed to be on Sept. 25. Following her announcement, it was also confirmed that Glee alum, Lea Michele will take over the role of Fanny Brice.
The producers also explained their decision to bring Michele into the mix. They said that it was a very smart financial decision for Funny Girl.
“You could not overcome the reviews and the lack of the Tony nomination,” they said.
Funny Girl premiered in April to a slew of mixed reviews. The lead star didn’t also receive a Tony nomination. But the production received one nomination for the featured actor, Jared Grimes.
As of writing, Michele has not yet responded to the reports. But in November, she appeared on the Little Me: Growing Up Broadway podcast and said that she was excited to watch Funny Girl on Broadway.
“I am so unbelievably excited to see Funny Girl on Broadway. I cannot wait. I had drinks with [director] Michael [Mayer] the other day, and I just think that Beanie is an incredible choice for the production, and I think it's going to be so wonderful,” she said.
Little did she know that she would be cast as the lead character in the Broadway show months later.
Meanwhile, another change to the casting of Funny Girl has to do with fellow Glee alum, Jane Lynch. She played the role of Fanny’s mom and she will now be replaced by Tovah Feldshuh.
As of writing, it’s unclear if the cast shakeup was a result of the lukewarm reviews that the entire team received.