Final casting has been announced for two of this autumn’s big play openings: The Cryptogram at the Donmar Warehouse and A Moon for the Misbegotten at the Old Vic.

Douglas Henshall will join the previously announced Kim Cattrall (of Sex and the City fame) in Josie Rourke’s new production David Mamet’s The Cryptogram, which opens at the Donmar on 17 October 2006 (previews from 12 October) and continues until 25 November 2006 (See News, 14 Jul 2006).

In Mamet’s elliptical 1995 three-hander about the end of childhood, John is afraid to fall asleep because he doesn’t understand what’s happening or why his father hasn’t returned home. Cattrall is John’s mother Donny while Henshall is Del, a friend of John’s father. The child’s part of John will be shared at alternating performances by Joe Ashman, Adam J Brown and Oliver Coopersmith.

Henshall’s recent stage credits include Death of a Salesman (for which he was nominated for a Award for Best Supporting Actor), Darwin in Malibu, The Coast of Utopia and The Crucible. On screen, he’s been seen in This Year’s Love, The Strange Case of Sherlock Holmes and Arthur Conan Doyle, Anna Karenina and Psychos.

At the Old Vic, Irish screen actor Colm Meaney (pictured) will appear alongside, as previously announced (See News, 9 Jun 2006), Kevin Spacey and Eve Best in Howard Davies’ revival of Eugene O’Neill’s 1947 play A Moon for the Misbegotten (See News, 8 Sep 2006), which runs at the Old Vic from 26 September to 23 December 2006 (previews from 15 September).

Josie (Best), a towering woman with a quick tongue and a ruined reputation lives in a dilapidated Connecticut farmhouse with her conniving father, Phil Hogan (Meaney). Together they’re a formidable force as they scrape together a livelihood. But Josie’s softer side is exposed through her love of Jim Tyrone (Spacey), Hogan’s landlord and drinking buddy – a third-rate actor whose dreams of stardom were washed away by alcohol.

Meaney is best known to TV fans for his long-running role in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: The Next Generation. His many film credits include Con Air, Under Siege, Far and Away, The Commitments, The Snapper, The Van, The Road to Welville, Layer Cake, The Boys and Girls from County Claire and Intermission. He last appeared on the London stage in the Donmar’s 1999 production of Juno and the Paycock. His New York theatre credits include Breaking the Code and The Cider House Rules.

The Moon for the Misbegotten cast is completed by Eugene O’Hare (as Josie’s brother Mike Hogan) and Billy Carter (as T Stedman Harder). The production is designed by Bob Crowley with lighting by Paule Constable, sound by Christopher Shutt and music by Dominic Muldowney, and co-produced by Elliot Martin, Nica Burns and Max Weitzenhoffer.

- by Terri Paddock