VIEWPOINTS:: Fate Strikes the Delta

Size alters perception. What is seen on a television screen simply cannot equal the impact of a play unfolding on a stage. A further problem is that TV places disproportionate emphasis on closeups of talking heads; in the theater, the characters appear in the totality of their bodily presence.

Allowing for these limitations, NBC's series, A Tribute to American Theater, makes a highly auspicious debut with Tennessee Williams' Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (Dec. 6, 9 p.m. E.S.T.). Laurence Olivier, who is the artistic producer for all of the programs, plays Big Daddy. Maureen Stapleton is Big...

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