McGregor resigned from Natural Nylon this past autumn, citing "back to back filming" (See News, 31 Oct 2002). And now, this week, both Law and his actress-wife and Natural Nylon co-founder Sadie Frost have withdrawn as well, blaming workload and family commitments.
McGregor and Law teamed up with ATG to launch the theatre arm of its pre-existing film company in high-profile fashion in January 2001. At the time, they said the aim of the company was to produce a range of drama, comedy and mid-scale musicals that would either star the actors themselves or utilise their expertise and contacts. The company also planned to evolve as many as possible of the stage productions into film projects, building on a successful tradition of British film often originating from the theatre.
Commenting on the demise of the company, an ATG spokeswoman told Whatsonstage.com today that Natural Nylon Entertainment, as well as its theatre body, had indeed folded. However, "the Ambassador Theatre Group has an ongoing relationship with the individual actors involved with Natural Nylon. We are discussing production ideas with them, and we look forward to bringing these projects to fruition in the future."
The only Natural Nylon production that has so far come to pass was the Jude Law-fronted Dr Faustus, co-produced with the Young Vic where it had a limited sell-out run in March/April 2002. Also promised at the 2001 launch were a new Christopher Hampton adaptation of Chekhov's Three Sisters, directed by Sean Mathias, and Mark Healy's adaptation of John Fowles' novel The Collector, directed by Mark Clements.
The ATG spokeswoman told Whatsonstage.com that Three Sisters was still "very much on the cards", with an announcement due shortly. As for The Collector, it hasn't been ruled out but is looking less likely with "no immediate progress".
ATG has also been in discussion with Law about bringing his Hamlet to the London stage (See The Goss, 18 Dec 2002). The spokeswoman confirmed that talks were ongoing, though the timing of the project is dependent on fitting it around Law's "very busy filming schedule". For the past six months, he has been in Romania filming Anthony Minghella's screen adaptation of Charles Frazier's novel Cold Mountain, with other upcoming screen releases including Marlowe and The World of Tomorrow.
At the time of McGregor's Natural Nylon departure, his publicist told Whatsonstage.com that, because of his schedule, McGregor had no plans to return to the stage in a Natural Nylon or any other production. McGregor last appeared on stage - after a seven-year absence - in Hampstead Theatre's 1998 revival of Little Malcolm and His Struggle Against the Eunuchs, which transferred to the West End.
- by Terri Paddock