Mean Girls, SpongeBob lead Tony Award nominations with 12 nods each

NEW YORK—Tina Fey’s musical Mean Girls, which she adapted from her much-beloved and oft-quoted 2004 high school comedy movie, and the goofy undersea adaptation from the cartoon SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical lead the Tony Award nominations with dozen nods each.

A British revival of Angels in America, Tony Kushner’s monumental, two-part drama about AIDS, life and love during the 1980s, grabbed 11 nominations — the most for any play — 25 years after it first appeared on Broadway. The shimmering, grown-up musical The Band’s Visit also earned 11 nods.

J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter franchise extended its magical touch to Broadway, with a two-part stage play featuring the bespectacled wizard earning 10 nominations, as did a revival of My Fair Lady.

Best new musical category is filled by The Band’s Visit, Frozen, Mean Girls and SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical. Those musicals that failed to make the cut were the Hal Prince revue Prince of Broadway, the Jimmy Buffet musical Escape to Margaritaville and Summer, about disco diva Donna Summer.

The two-part Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, which picks up 19 years from where Rowling’s last novel left off and portrays Potter and his friends as grown-ups, won nine Olivier Awards in London before coming to America and bewitching critics and audiences alike. It now will face The Children, Farinelli and The King, Junk and Latin History for Morons for best new play.

Best male acting nominations for a play include Denzel Washington, starring in a revival of Eugene O’Neill’s epic The Iceman Cometh. The 2010 Tony winner for Fences will have to face-off against Andrew Garfield in Angels in America, Tom Hollander of Travesties, Jamie Parker of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child and Mark Rylance in Farinelli and The King.

Michael Cera of Brampton, Ont., received a nomination for best featured actor in a play for his role in Lobby Hero.

Amy Schumer, who made her Broadway debut in Steve Martin’s comedy Meteor Shower, won a nomination for best actress in a play. Others in the category include Glenda Jackson from Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women, Condola Rashad in Saint Joan and Lauren Ridloff in Children of a Lesser God.

Carousel, My Fair Lady and Once on This Island make up the best musical revival category, mostly because they’re only eligible nominees.

The best play revival category is filled by Angels in America, Three Tall Women, Lobby Hero, Travesties and The Iceman Cometh.

Bruce Springsteen, whose solo show mixes songs and stories from his bestselling memoir Born to Run and has been banking over $2 million (U.S.) each week he’s onstage, will be granted a special, non-competitive Tony, along with John Leguizamo for Latin History for Morons.

Plenty of nominations don’t necessarily lead to actual wins on Tony night. While Hamilton was nominated for 16 awards in 2016 and went on to win 11, just last year Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 earned a leading 12 nominations but got just two technical awards on the big night.