Calista's Stage Delay

04/07/1998 AT 12:00 AM EDT

Politics and cattle are being blamed for a postponement of Calista Flockhart's London stage bow in the American classic comedy "The Philadelphia Story," its British producers announced Friday. "The first two weeks of what was only likely to be a seven-week season are now highly likely to clash with the British general election," a representative of the show told Reuters. "Coupled with the drop in tourists due to the foot-and-mouth crisis, this could have led to serious financial implications." Without being specific about future dates, the spokeswoman said that there would be a delay in the opening of the show. She did not mention a complete cancellation. The "Ally McBeal" star, 36, would assume the role of Tracy Lord, a socialite ice goddess made famous when Katharine Hepburn played her on Broadway in 1938 and then onscreen in 1939. Grace Kelly played Tracy in the 1956 movie musical version, "High Society."

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