Philadelphia (CBS) — American classics come to Philadelphia. “To Kill A Mockingbird” captivates Academy of Music audiences. CBS3’s Janelle Burrell had the chance to speak with the lead actor about taking on the role.
“I jumped at it,” said Richard Thomas. “I never thought about it again.”
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The Emmy Award-winning actor said he went “all in” when he was offered the role of Atticus Finch, bringing Harper Lee’s 1960 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel to life on stage.
JB: “This is a story that many of us read in school and are loved by many.
Thomas: “Well, Atticus Finch is a small-town lawyer. He’s a widower. He’s got a boy and a girl, Scout and Gem. is an African-American woman.”
“And basically they raised the kids together,” added Thomas.
Adapted by Aaron Sorkin, the play takes place in 1930s Alabama.It is a story with strong themes of race and humanity.
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“This is really a play about social justice issues in our country,” Thomas said.
Especially a life lesson that still resonates today.
“It’s a story about growing up, about childhood, about the loss of childhood innocence,” said Thomas.
“It’s certainly a special experience to play,” he added.
Interestingly, the girl who played “The Scout” in the 1962 film version is one of the characters in this cast.
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“To Kill A Mockingbird” runs now through July 24th at the Academy of Music at the Kimmel Cultural Campus.