Matthew Broderick says he's puzzled by the bashing he's received for his actions during the first New York preview of "The Starry Messenger," a new play by good friend Kenneth Lonergan.
"We had to rush to our first preview and then I guess we got some press just after one show, which I don't really understand," the actor says.
Messages posted on various theater Web sites said a prompter in the front row needed to assist Broderick with his lines during the Oct. 26 performance of the three-hour play, produced by off-Broadway's New Group.
Broderick adds, "It's going very well now, I think, now that we've had a whole week. And it's going to be really good by the time it opens."
New Group artistic director Scott Elliott said "The Starry Messenger," the story of an astronomy teacher's affair with a younger woman, will open Nov. 23, a week later than originally planned.
For now, Broderick, who has appeared on stage in such hits as "Brighton Beach Memoirs" and "The Producers," has something else on which to focus _ a new movie.
At a cocktail reception to promote "Wonderful World" during the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival, the still boyish-looking actor said the film was an opportunity to work with another friend _ screenwriter and first-time director Joshua Godlin.
"I just thought it was a beautifully written script. ... The director is my close friend, so I was very happy get to work with him," the 47-year-old Broderick says.
"We've been friends for 20 years," Godlin, who wrote the screenplay for the action film "Darkman," says. "I don't write with an actor in mind, but definitely knowing Matthew as I do, I always thought he'd be great in the role."
In "Wonderful World," a dark comedy, Broderick portrays a former children's folk singer and father who has fallen on hard times _ until he meets his roommate's flamboyant sister, played by Tony Award-nominated actress Sanaa Lathan.