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©AP / Scarlett Johansson
© AP / Scarlett Johansson
Scarlett Johansson wins rave reviews for 'Cat On A Hot Tin Roof'


Scarlett Johansson has won over New York's tough theatre critics and pulled in a slew of positive reviews for her second stint on Broadway, with many comparing her to Hollywood veteran Kathleen Turner. 

The actress, who won a Tony Award for her Broadway debut in Arthur Miller's "View From the Bridge," returns to the stage in a new production of Tennessee Williams' "Cat On A Hot Tin Roof." She tackles the role of Maggie "the Cat," made famous by Elizabeth Taylor in the 1958 movie adaptation, and a host of famous faces turned out to see her perform at the play's opening night on Thursday.

Bing: More reviews for Johansson on Broadway

James Bond star Daniel Craig and his wife Rachel Weisz were in the audience at Manhattan's Richard Rodgers Theatre, along with pop star Nick Jonas and actor Victor Garber, and Johansson managed to win over even the most notoriously tough critics with her performance.

Ben Brantley of the New York Times writes, "Ms. Johansson, like Maggie, seems to possess a confidence that can turn raw nerves into raw power ... She is perhaps too forthright to be truly feline ... but Ms. Johansson confirms her promise as a stage actress of imposing presence and adventurous intelligence. Quibble all you want about the particulars of her performance. She obviously has a strong sense of what she wants to do here and the convictions to follow it through."

Mark Kennedy of Associated Press adds, "Scarlett Johansson turns in a nifty turn as Maggie, finding humor and barely hidden desperation in her role as frustrated wife and mother-to-be. She's less overtly sexy than other actresses who have played the ironic role, making her Maggie more cerebral, angry and proud."

Elisabeth Vincentelli of the New York Post compared the 28-year-old actress to "a young Kathleen Turner," writing, "Johansson didn't pick the easiest vehicle for her second Broadway appearance ... While her performance often lacks nuance and starts off too shouty, the star eventually gains in confidence. Spitting out Williams' florid lines in a low-throated growl reminiscent of the young Kathleen Turner (herself a Broadway "Cat" in 1990), Johansson successfully brings to the fore Maggie's rough edges."

Brendan Lemon of the Financial Times also compares Johansson to husky-voiced Turner, who won a Tony Award nomination for the same role in 1990. He writes, "Johansson delivers a Maggie with a whisky voice. The huskiness comes as a surprise in one so young, and cues us that her voice may be headed the way of Kathleen Turner's."

Jan 18, 2013 8:28AM
Kudos to ScarJo for tackling the demanding role of Maggie "The Cat" in Tennessee Williams' venerable "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof."  Her work is a gift to Broadway, and the latest revival of this classic drama only proves Williams was one of the greatest playwrighting talents of the 20th century.  Johansson puts herself out there in the ranks for another Tony Award when they're handed out later this spring.
Jan 18, 2013 9:20AM
Have to admit I'm impressed. Seems Scarlett is a lot more than a pretty face.
Jan 18, 2013 9:09AM
She always wins rave reviews in my book.  She's talented, attractive, and she interprets her roles well.  Not to mention her impeccable wardrobe!
always loved her performances, since she was a little girl, she is beautifull and tallented,
Jan 18, 2013 11:17AM
ScarJo...sounds like the street name of a skanky hooker.
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