The Sisters, a nine-character ensemble drama, reconstitutes the always complex, often wintry family relationships of Anton Chekhov's The Three Sisters in a wood-paneled New York university faculty lounge. The three sisters and their brother, a family of scholars, have always been mutually regarding planets in an exclusive little solar system; they are the literate, self-conscious off-spring of a college chancellor, now deceased, whose memory may not be universally esteemed. There's Olga, the serious, austere one (Mary Stuart Masterson); Marcia, the beautiful, bitchy one (Maria Bello); Irene, the pampered, troubled 22-year-old "baby" of the group (Erika Christensen); and Andrew, the brother (Alessandro Nivola), who, his sisters think, is about to make the mistake of his life, marrying an uncultured shop girl (Elizabeth Banks) beneath their academic, acerbic selves. Flamboyant Marcia, who fancies herself a "coquette from another era" and admits she flaunts her emotional scars in public, gets many of the best lines, telling her careerist psychiatrist husband, for example, that as usual he's gone from pompous to obnoxious without stopping at amusing, but all the players get their share of delicious biting dialogue. Eric McCormack, Tony Goldwyn, Rip Torn, and Chris O'Donnell play the men in the sisters' lives.
Arthur Allan Seidelman has directed more than 30 feature and television films. The most recent include the award-winning Walking Across Egypt, starring Ellen Burstyn and Jonathan Taylor Thomas; The Summer of Ben Tyler, starring James Woods and Elizabeth McGovern; Harvest of Fire, starring Patty Duke and Lolita Davidovich for Hallmark Hall of Fame; Miracle in the Woods, starring Della Reese and Meredith Baxter; and Grace and Glory, starring Gena Rowlands and Diane Lane, also for Hallmark. Seidelman just signed a two-picture contract with Universal Studios, and is scheduled to direct Sidney Poitier in Shadowman and Susan Sarandon in Mother's Day. He is also signed to direct the film adaptation of his stage production of Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks. Honors include two Emmys, Grand Prize from the New York Film and Television Festival, prizes from the Chicago, San Marco, Palm Springs and Heartlands film festivals, Humanitas Award, Peabody Award, and three Christopher Awards.