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‘Stage Beauty’ sparked real-life romance

Actors Claire Danes, Billy Crudup aren’t commenting
/ Source: The Associated Press

The on-screen romance in “Stage Beauty” could be upstaged by the real romance that ignited on the set between Claire Danes and Billy Crudup.

The film’s co-stars were hounded by questions about their relationship at the movie’s premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. The couple offered the standard “no comment” to all questions about their personal lives, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Sunday.

“All I will say is that we work very well together,” Danes told the newspaper.

But “Stage Beauty” director Richard Eyre stirred the pot by acknowledging their relationship to Entertainment Weekly magazine. He commented that it was apparent during filming that “these two very intelligent actors, who are witty and attractive, got on very well.”

“Stage Beauty,” which also stars Ben Chaplin, is set in 17th-century England at a time when men assumed the female roles in plays. Crudup spends much of the movie in full drag as a stage star considered the most beautiful leading lady of his day.

Danes plays an ambitious wannabe actress who falls in love with him, but is jealous of his success. She finally gets a chance to perform when King Charles II decides to allow women to take the stage.