Richard Armitage is the latest star of The Hobbit films to head to the London stage. He will play John Proctor in the Old Vic production of The Crucible that runs from 24 June.
The actor, who plays Thorin Oakenshield in the hugely popular series of fantasy films, is joined in the Arthur Miller play by Samantha Colley, who makes her professional debut as the scheming Abigail Williams, and Anna Madeley.
Armitage, who is well known to fans of TV drama from his runs in Robin Hood and Spooks, honed his craft on the stage before getting his big screen break, appearing in productions including the Royal Shakespeare Company’s The Duchess Of Malfi and Macbeth.
In returning to the London stage, he follows the lead of fellow Middle Earth superstars Martin Freeman and Benedict Cumberbatch. Freeman, who plays Bilbo Baggins in the big screen adventure, will star in Richard III at the Trafalgar Studios from July, while Cumberbatch, who lends his voice to the dragon Smaug, will play Hamlet at the Barbican from January 2015.
London theatre regular Madeley, like Armitage, has a history with the RSC, but has most recently been seen on the capital’s stage in productions including Earthquakes In London, The Turn Of The Screw and The Philanthropist.
Miller’s The Crucible, which will play in-the-round at the Old Vic, tells the story of the Salem witch trials and one man’s fight to save his identity in a community where intolerance collides with superstition and hysteria.
The Old Vic production promises to be a ‘visceral re-imagining’ of the famous play, from the hand of acclaimed award-winning director Yaël Farber.
Prior to The Crucible’s run at the Old Vic, the iconic theatre hosts current drama Other Desert Cities, which runs until 24 May, and one-man show Clarence Darrow, which stars Kevin Spacey and runs from 28 May to 15 June.