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    Network tickets

    ‘I'm mad as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore.’

    Based on Paddy Chayefsky’s Academy Award-winning 1976 film, Lee Hall adapts Network for the National Theatre’s Lyttelton stage, playing a strictly limited run and starring Bryan Cranston. In an era plagued by “fake news” and accusations of politicians manipulating social media to work in their favour, the topical play remains shockingly relevant today.

    Network follows world-weary broadcaster Howard Beale, as declining ratings threaten his job. As his livelihood becomes jeopardised, he vows to kill himself live on air. Audiences immediately grow, and the TV executives realise there’s money to be made is his uninhibited rants. Both terrifying and hilarious, this vintage world where opinion trumps fact is all too familiar in the current climate.

    Bryan Cranston stars as Howard Beale, best known for playing Walter White in Breaking Bad. Theatre credits include Broadway’s All the Way, whilst multiple screen appearances include The Cleveland Show, How I Met Your Mother, Sneaky Pete and SuperMansion.

    Further casting includes Charles Babalola, Tobi Bamtefa, Ed Begley, Alex Bonney, Tom Challenger, Richard Cordery, Isabel Della-Porta, Michelle Dockery, Kit Downes, Ian Drysdale, Michael Elwyn, Caroline Faber, Robert Gilbert, Pete Harden, Douglas Henshall, Tom Hodgkins, Tunji Kasim, Andrew Lewis, Beverley Longhurst, Evan Milton, Stuart Nunn, Rebecca Omogbehin, Patrick Poletti, Danny Szam, Paksie Vernon and Matthew Wright.

    Network is adapted for the stage by Lee Hall (Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour, Billy Elliot) and is directed by Ivo van Hove (The Crucible, Hedda Gabler, Lazarus), featuring set and lighting design by Jan Versweyveld, costume design by An D’Huys, sound design by Eric Sleichim and video design by Tal Yarden.

    Incorporating onstage dining, live video footage and multiple locations, Network reminds audiences of the relentless influence the media has over us today. The production plays at the National’s Lyttelton Theatre from 4 November 2017 to 24 March 2018, with a press night on 13 November 2018.

    A particular highlight is ‘Foodwork’, the onstage restaurant where certain ticketholders are served a three-course, fine dining meal over the duration of the show, in view of the rest of the audience. This immersive element is a particularly unique feature of the show.

    Performance dates: 04 Nov 2017 - 24 Mar 2018

    Running time: 2 hours (without an interval)

    Age recommendation: Not suitable for children

    Special notice: Fans of the original film, immersive theatre, technology and the media will find this dark comedy particularly cutting in today’s political climate. Impressive design and solid writing are also a draw.

    60 seat view photos

    Network seat view photos show what view you will get for your money. Unfortunately we do not have any seat views for this show.

    Latest audience reviews

    Incredible play, incredible acting. Hugely enjoyable and clever.

    caz83 Top 200 reviewer05 Dec 2018
    daniellewis Top 50 reviewer15 Jan 2019

    Bryan Cranston, Ivo Van Hove, what more do you want? This is an adaptation of the Oscar-winning movie,... More

    coryhaas 26 Jun 2018

    Bryan Cranston, Ivo Van Hove, what more do you want? This is an adaptation of the Oscar-winning movie, at points, it feels long but I wonder if that's the point? To feel saturated by images of the world, to understand the politics of violence and power. The performances are excellent and Bryan Cranston is at the top of the game. Ivo is my favourite director, so I may be partial.

    coryhaas 26 Jun 2018
    ollielintott 21 Aug 2018

    Bryan Cranston was excellent in the lead role as the news anchorman who announces he wants to be the... More

    joc78 Top 10 reviewer01 Mar 2018

    Bryan Cranston was excellent in the lead role as the news anchorman who announces he wants to be the first newsreader to commit suicide live on air. This play had a real dynamic to it. The set design was incredible - I've never seen anything like it before in terms of the technical aspect. TV Screens all over the stage, cameramen everywhere, wires, thumping drum beats and loud music. You even had members of the audience dining on a 3 course menu to the side of the stage whilst you look at a fully working kitchen with the chef preparing the meals in front of your eyes. At some points I found this distracting and I'm not sure what it added to the performance but it was certainly different. Michelle Dockery and Douglas Henshall gave great supporting actor performances but the night belonged to Bryan Cranston - he was excellent!

    joc78 Top 10 reviewer01 Mar 2018

    Network is a work of art. Bryan Cranston absolutely stole the show and I was in tears at the end with... More

    bryonyjameson Top 200 reviewer19 Feb 2018

    Network is a work of art. Bryan Cranston absolutely stole the show and I was in tears at the end with how well it was done. The staging is unlike anything I have ever seen before with all of the camera work and outside broadcast. Brilliant. One of the best plays I have ever seen.

    bryonyjameson Top 200 reviewer19 Feb 2018
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