James Dreyfus has pulled out of the English language world premiere of The Lie on medical advice, it has been announced.
He will be replaced by Olivier-nominated actor Alexander Hanson, who will play the husband of his real-life wife Samantha Bond.
The show was due to begin previews on September 14 ahead of press night on September 27, and with Hanson joining rehearsals so late it is likely some previews will be cancelled, The Menier Chocolate Factory said.
In the production Bond plays the part of Alice, who spots her friend’s husband with another woman and has to decide whether to tell her the truth or lie.
Hanson will play her husband Paul, who is convinced it is better to deceive her friend.
A statement from the theatre said: “The cast and creative team are working hard to put the play on stage at the earliest opportunity to honour as many previews as possible.
“Due to Hanson stepping in so late in the rehearsal process, it is likely that some previews will be cancelled – please note the Menier will be in touch directly with any members of the public affected.”
Tony Gardner and Alexandra Gilbreath also star in the play, directed by Lindsay Posner and translated from Florian Zeller’s French by Christopher Hampton.
The production sees the return of Hanson, Zeller, Hampton and Posner to the Menier following the huge success of The Truth in 2016, which later transferred to the West End and was nominated for an Olivier Award for Best Comedy.
The Lie will run at the Menier Chocolate Factory to November 18.