Few would argue with the proposition that major theatres both in the West End and on Broadway are now obsessed by star casting. This makes perfect sense where the individuals involved have stage training and experience. How could anyone object to a West End return from Sir Mark Rylance, who was the first Artistic Director at Shakespeare’s Globe?

However, some may offer a wry smile to discover that his co-star in Juno and the Paycock is J Smith-Cameron, yet another member of the Succession cast, following in the footsteps of Brian Cox and Sarah Snook onto the London stage and Jeremy Strong on Broadway. While she has a long and garlanded stage history, even having played Juno off-Broadway, it is hard to imagine that an actress unknown in London would have netted a major West End role but for appearing in the popular TV series.

Indeed, when it comes to West End stagings, producers are now increasingly seeking out big-name TV and film celebrities to play solo, creating a business model that is clearly designed to maximise profits.

Watching a great actor giving a phenomenal performance is undoubtedly worth the price of a theatre ticket, even when that price is eye-watering. Regrettably, many theatregoers now pay their money purely to be able to share the experience with friends on social media, somehow gaining kudos by sitting with 1,000 other people in the distant presence of an A-list celebrity. The acting doesn’t so much take second place as delay the opportunity to send off even more selfies and messages.

Even by the standards of recent arrivals on stages both sides of the Atlantic, the announcement this week of an aspiring debutant is likely to excite even more fervour than almost any before. While Bruce Springsteen’s Broadway appearance sold out at exorbitant prices, his event was more akin to a low-key pop concert than a true Broadway show.

However, on Monday we were given the exciting news that George Clooney is to première on Broadway next spring in a stage version of his film Good Night, and Good Luck, which will be directed by one of Broadway’s finest, David Cromer. Even better, not only will one of Hollywood’s most acclaimed stars be making his Broadway debut but he has co-written this new play. If anyone can remember seeing George Clooney acting on a stage before please let us know, as if there were any appearances early in his career they have disappeared in the mists of time.

One can only guess that the superstar’s motivation for taking this brave step. It can hardly be money or fame. Perhaps he wants to prove something to himself or is seeking thrills? Maybe the most likely explanation is Clooney’s desire to experience the kind of adulation from a live audience eight times a week that normally only appears thirdhand or in award ceremonies.

Ignoring other considerations for a moment, it may seem strange that Clooney will be recreating the role of broadcaster Edward R Murrow 20 years after the movie, since, inevitably, in his mid-60s, he will be 20 years older.

There can be little doubt that tickets will sell out immediately, since the Clooney fanbase comprises the kind of people who can comfortably afford $500 or more to see a play. As always with stage adaptations of movies, the question arises as to whether it is really worth shelling out such an extortionate amount of money when you can stream the original or purchase it on disc for under $10 / £10.

In this case, while a big-name is undoubtedly good for the industry’s profile, there must be a serious question mark hanging over the quality of the superstar’s stage acting. It is literally an unknown, and therefore anyone purchasing tickets to enjoy the play, rather than wallowing the glory of being in the presence of their hero, may enjoy a pleasant surprise, but could as easily be in for a bit of a letdown.

We will all find out in a year’s time, though most of us will only do so via the critics or bloggers, either because of difficulties in reaching New York or in affording / obtaining tickets.

Once the George Clooney box has been ticked, we might then ask ourselves, are there any remaining A-list movie stars comparable with or of greater stature than George Clooney still available to make a belated stage debut?