September 5, 2007 / 7:12 PM / 11 years ago

Radcliffe nervous about baring all on Broadway

NEW YORK (Reuters) - British actor Daniel Radcliffe hopes to debut on Broadway next year in a reprise of his London role in “Equus,” a performance where he shed not only his clothes but the mantle of Harry Potter.

Daniel Radcliffe in a publicity image for "Equus". Radcliffe hopes to debut on Broadway next year in a reprisal of his London role in "Equus," a performance where he shed not only his clothes but also the mantle of Harry Potter. REUTERS/Handout

Radcliffe won rave reviews for his performance as a tortured teenager during an 8-week run of Peter Shaffer’s grueling psychological thriller in London earlier this year, but said the prospect of acting in New York was “terrifying.”

“It will be amazing, but I will be terrified because I was talking to Richard Griffiths about playing New York and he said the most stupid thing you can do is underestimate New York audiences,” said Radcliffe, 18, in an interview with Reuters.

Griffiths, who appeared with Radcliffe in “Equus” in London and played the role of Uncle Vernon in the Harry Potter movies, won a Tony Award in New York in 2006 for his role in “The History Boys.”

While promoting his latest movie, “December Boys,” in New York, Radcliffe — best known for bringing to life author J.K. Rowling’s boy wizard Harry Potter — said “Equus” could open late next year in New York.

“I would be very nervous because I think that (the audiences are) even more discerning than in London,” he said. “But I know we have a good show, it was a good show when we did it in London and hopefully if we do it again it will still be that good. It has to be better.”

Media hype over Radcliffe’s nude scene in the play sparked more than $4 million in advance ticket sales in London.

“Equus” was first produced in London in 1973 to critical acclaim and won a Tony Award for best play in 1975 during a long run on Broadway. It was adapted by Shaffer for a 1977 film starring Richard Burton and Peter Firth, which received three Oscar nominations in 1978.

“December Boys,” Radcliffe’s first major role outside the Harry Potter films, opens in the United States, Britain and Australia this month. The movie tells the tale of four orphans growing up at a Catholic convent in outback Australia.

Radcliffe said he will begin working on “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” — the sixth movie in the seven part series — this month and that the project would likely take a minimum of eight or nine months.

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