Though he’s played plenty of other roles as well, including a critically acclaimed, Oscar-nominated turn in Into The Wild, Hal Holbrook has made a career out of donning a white suit and channeling the impish spirit of beloved author, humorist and raconteur Mark Twain. Holbrook has been slipping inside Twain’s folksy personage for nearly a half-century now (since 1954), picking up a Tony Award, Drama Desk Award, and Emmy nomination in the process.
The 87-year-old Holbrook continues to perform intermittently as Twain but the avuncular thespian better watch his fucking ass because there’s a new Mark Twain on the scene and he’s looking to destroy the competition. With extreme prejudice.
Noted actor, crazy person, and 50 Cent best buddy Val Kilmer is taking a brief break from starring in terrible direct-to-video movies to take his one-man show about the man born Samuel Clemens, Citizen Twain to the Historic Masonic Lodge at Hollywood Forever Cemetery for a two-week run beginning March 23rd. Tickets are $60 and every performance will be followed by a Q&A with the writer/director/star no doubt peppered with queries like, “Is this an elaborate practical joke? No, seriously, is it?”, “At this point, would you say you’re crazier than a shithouse rat or exactly as crazy as a shithouse rat?”, "Remember when you had a thriving career? Whatever happened to that?" and, of course, “Where did you get the idea to do this, other than from Hal Holbrook, who has literally been doing it since before you were born?”
A press release for the show—which, it bears repeating, is being presented at the masonic lodge of a legendary Hollywood cemetery—promises “great wit, song and prose.” There is no word yet on whether Holbrook plans to surprise Kilmer by showing up unexpectedly in character and challenging him to a Twain-off, but you know, they aren’t promising that that won’t happen either.
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