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Kirk Douglas to Star in Adaptation of Ken Kesey's "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest"

Feb. 5, 1962 - Kirk Douglas has decided to star in the stage as well as the screen version of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.” The source is Ken Kesey’s first novel of the same name. Mr. Douglas, whose Broadway apprenticeship led to Hollywood stardom, is planning to return to the local stage in the dramatization at the end of the year. The new work will bring him back after an absence since 1946. The adaptation of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” will be the work of Dale Wasserman. Stage and screen rights were acquired by Joel Productions, which Mr. Douglas controls along with Bryna Productions. The action is set in a mental hospital, representing a symbolic microcosm of a world of increasing controls. The plot deals with the struggle of wills between a ward nurse and a newly committed patient, to be played by Mr. Douglas. The star will depict a lusty, brawling gambler, who is fighting a society that fosters guilt and shame. While a graduate student at Stanford University, Mr. Kesey obtained his material as an employee of a Veterans’ Administration mental hospital.

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