The elusive producer at the center of Broadway’s biggest drama in memory insisted yesterday that the $12 million musical he postponed indefinitely on Sunday isn’t dead.
“Rebecca’ is moving forward,” Ben Sprecher said in a brief telephone soliloquy. “I will never give up on this show.”
Sprecher didn’t take questions. The call was put through by his lawyer, Ron Russo, who was also on the line.
“I never made up or fabricated any investor,” Sprecher said. “I never made up Paul Abrams.”
Abrams is the mystery investor whose sudden death in August forced Sprecher and his fellow lead producer, Louise Forlenza, to postpone “Rebecca.”
Sprecher later said that he had never met or spoken with Abrams, whose contribution of $4.5 million was necessary to start rehearsals this month. Another attempt to restart the musical last week failed when a new investor was scared off by an anonymous e-mail.
Sprecher said he was “very upset” about recent events. “Thank you for being patient.”
Death by Mosquito
Abrams, who seems to have left no traces of his life or death, reportedly died of malaria.
A transcript of an anonymous e-mail that Russo forwarded to reporters accused Sprecher of inventing Abrams to buy time to raise money for the show. Russo said the e-mail was sent to an investor on Friday who intended to put up seven figures to save the musical. Sprecher called that e-mail “vicious.”
Russo said prosecutors are investigating the circumstances surrounding “Rebecca,” but declined to say which prosecutors. The lawyer said Sprecher would be “destroyed” should the show not open. He’d be liable for returning millions to investors that have already spent on sets and other expenses.
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