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Last Updated: Friday, 15 June 2007, 11:38 GMT 12:38 UK
Actor Lithgow to make RSC debut
John Lithgow
John Lithgow starred in 3rd Rock From the Sun
Hollywood film star John Lithgow is to make his debut for the Royal Shakespeare Company in Twelfth Night.

Lithgow, best known for films like The World According to Garp and TV comedy series 3rd Rock From The Sun, is also a seasoned Broadway performer.

His theatre credits include The Changing Room and Retreat From Moscow.

The US star will play the part of Malvolio in September's production, which will be staged at the Courtyard Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon.

Lithgow also starred in the stage musical version of comedy movie Dirty Rotten Scoundrels.

And he voiced the part of Lord Farquaad in the award-winning animation film Shrek.

Mickey Rooney and wife Jan
Rooney and his wife Jan have been married for 25 years

Bartlett, who was the artistic director of the Lyric Theatre in Hammersmith, west London, between 1994 and 2004, has cast Shameless star Marjorie Yates in the male role of Sir Toby Belch in the Shakespeare play.

"Twelfth Night shows a capricious disregard for the normal rules of gender," he said.

Meanwhile, veteran Hollywood star Mickey Rooney, 86, is to make his pantomime debut at the Sunderland Empire.

Rooney, who has appeared opposite the likes of Judy Garland and Lana Turner, will star as Baron Hardup in Cinderella alongside Les Dennis, former Liberty X singer Michelle Heaton, her husband Andy Scott Lee and ex-Emmerdale actor Dale Meeks.

Rooney's wife, Jan, will play the Fairy Godmother in the pantomime which opens on 8 December.

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