Full casting has now been confirmed for the London premiere of multi award-winning hit Broadway musical The Producers, which opens at the West End's Theatre Royal Drury Lane on 9 November 2004 (previews from 22 October).

In addition to Richard Dreyfuss, Lee Evans and Leigh Zimmerman, who play Max Bialystock, Leo Bloom and their luscious assistant Ulla (See News, 17 Dec 2003 & 1 Mar 2004), the new production will star Whatsonstage.com and Olivier Award winner Conleth Hill (Stones in His Pockets and currently in Democracy) as Roger De Bris, Nicolas Colicos (Mamma Mia!) as Franz Liebkind and James Dreyfus (Notting Hill, TV’s Gimme Gimme and The Thin Blue Line) as Carmen Ghia.

Also in the London cast of The Producers are: Kenneth Avery-Clark, Stephen Carlile, Hadrian Delacey, Kate Graham, Amanda Minihan, Sherrie Pennington, Simon Adkins, Caroline Barnes, Suzanne Bullock, Leigh Constantine, Lisa Donmall, Christian Gibson, James Gray, Kelly Homewood, David Hulston, James Lucas, Rachel McDowell, Gavin Staplehurst, Luzahn Taylor, Emma Tunmore and Desi Valentine.

Based on Mel Brooks' 1968 film classic and set in New York in 1959, the musical comedy revolves around washed-up theatre producer Max Bialystock who, with his timid accountant Leo Bloom, cooks up a scheme to make a fortune by presenting a sure-fire flop called "Springtime for Hitler".

The Producers opened on Broadway in 2001 and, with its original stars Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick, went on to become the hottest, and most expensive, ticket in town and to sweep the board at that year's Tony Awards, scooping 12 prizes including Best Musical.

The show has music and lyrics by Mel Brooks, with a book by Brooks and Thomas Meehan. The London production reunites director and choreographer Susan Stroman with the rest of the original Broadway creative team. Scenic design is by Robin Wagner, costumes by William Ivey Long, lighting by Peter Kaczorowski, sound by Steve C Kennedy and orchestration by Doug Besterman.

The musical is presented in London by Rocco Landesman, David Ian for Clear Channel Entertainment, the Frankel Baruch Viertel Routh Group, Bob and Harvey Weinstein, Rick Steiner, Robert FX Sillerman and Mel Brooks in association with James D Stern/Douglas Meyer (See News, 2 Feb 2004).

- by Terri Paddock