“Is that what I think it is?” Lawrence asked.
“I daresay we’ve enacted a coup, Mr. Langner,” Theresa answered in a mock secretive whisper.
“They’ve signed?” he yelled back, raising his hands into the air and letting the binder fall. “But how? They could command a ransom and the best we offered was a third of what they normally take!”
“Well, first off,” Theresa replied seriously, “they truly believe in the importance of what we’re trying to accomplish in releasing these non-commercial works to the public. Also, there are two additional clauses...”
“The first one says they don’t work summers.”
“Okay. And the other?”
900 miles west of Broadway, in an undeveloped and verdant area of Wisconsin, Lynn waved a crisp white paper in the air as Alfred approached.
“Is that what I think it is?” he asked, smiling.
“Telegram for Mr. Lunt! Shall I read it? The Theater Guild... etcetera ...promising scripts, controversial topics... ah, here it is: No appearances during the summer months... aaand... never to appear in separate plays but to always be cast together!”
“Never apart, then?”
They took their contract as binding as they took their marriage, which lasted 55 years. Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne, the most revered acting team of American theater, spent every breathing minute together: on stage, radio, film, television, and at their Ten Chimneys estate; in love with acting and abundantly more so with each other. When Anastasia aired on March 17, 1967, it was the first time in 39 years that Lynn appeared publicly without her retired husband at her side.