Playwright Neil LaBute is haunted the American obsession with physical beauty. His 2008 play Reasons To Be Pretty was successfully revived in London at the Almeida Theatre in late 2011 with a cast including award-winning British actress Billie Piper. It examines our perception of beauty and asks whether it is as much of a curse to be conventionally attractive as it is to be considered ugly. It’s the final intstallment of his trilogy about society’s obsession with looks, following The Shape of Things which premiered at the Almeida in 2001, and Fat Pig which was a West End hit in 2008.
Billie, expecting her second child, played pregnant supermarket security guard Carly who is worried she may be losing the affections of her partner Kent who is besotted by a ‘stunner’ working in another part of the factory. The Telegraph’s Charles Spencer said that the play “…is blessed with a heart wrenching turn from the wonderful Billie Piper.”
LaBute has written a sequel Reasons To Be Happy which premiered in June 2013 at the MCC Theatre in New York.
Billie has just completed the premiere season of Richard Bean’s latest satire Great Britain to rave reviews at the National before it transferred to the West End’s Theatre Royal Haymarket with Lucy Punch replacing Billie in the lead role.