Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein reportedly told the cast and crew of Finding Neverland in April the Broadway show’s failure to garner a single Tony Award nomination was personal. Sunday, Seinfeld creator Larry David joked it was because he is Jewish.
Former Seinfeld cast member Jason Alexander joined David, whose Broadway act Fish in the Dark was also snubbed from awards consideration, on stage during Sunday’s 69th annual Tony Awards ceremony.
While presenting the best musical award to Fun Home, according to the Hollywood Reporter, the pair told jokes at the expense of David’s comedy production, which has received mixed reviews.
“The true measure of a man is not to be nominated and still show up to read a list of names of those who are nominated,” David joked. “That’s a big man;. That’s a big, big man.”
Alexander shot back, “You say ‘big man’; others might say ‘loser.'”
“If by ‘loser,’ you’re referring to a man who’s greeted eight times a week by 1,000 people that stand as one, applauding until their hands are raw, cheering until their voices are spent, whispering, ‘He’s so much better looking in person,’ and laughing until their faces are contorted in an anguished mask, that can best be described as a sort of Bell’s palsy.”
The showrunner then added: “People who, if it were up to them, would put aside the obvious anti-Semitism — yeah, that’s right, yeah, I said it; I said it — the anti-Semitism that denies a nomination to a Larry David or a Harvey Weinstein. Then, yes, I am a loser.”
Weinstein laughed from the audience at the remark.
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The Miramax founder reportedly comforted the cast crew of his Broadway adaptation Finding Neverland in April after the show was snubbed, presenting them with a cake decorated with the words, “We nominate you the best cast on Broadway.”
He also allegedly told the group the Tony snub “was a missile, squarely aimed at me,” according to an insider.
Many viewers, who chose to watch the 69th Tony Awards Sunday evening over Game 2 of the NBA Finals or HBO’s Game of Thrones, expressed sentiment David’s Tony presentation was the highlight of the evening.
Sunday night’s Tony Awards on CBS marked the lowest-rated broadcast ever.