Viola Davis, who was nominated for an Academy Award for her role as Mrs. Miller, only appears in two scenes. The first is an extended dialogue with Meryl Streep's character, Sister Aloysius. In the second, she appears only for about 10 seconds and does not speak.
The Broadway play ran for over a year at the Walter Kerr Theatre, with 525 performances. The original cast was: Cherry Jones as Sister Aloysius, Brían F. O'Byrne as Father Flynn, Heather Goldenhersh as Sister James, and Adriane Lenox as Mrs. Muller. All four were nominated for a Tony award. The play won four Tony awards: Best Play, Best Director (Doug Hughes), Best Actress (Jones), and Best Featured Actress (Lenox). John Patrick Shanley wrote both the stage play and the screen adaptation.