08/01/2012 06:25 pm ET Updated Aug 02, 2012

Gore Vidal Dead: 'The Best Man' Cast Reacts (SLIDESHOW)

The playwright, commentator, gadfly (a word that's skyrocketed in use these past hours), and public intellectual, Gore Vidal, died Tuesday at the age of 86, due to complications of pneumonia. Broadway is dimming its lights in Vidal's memory, but probably nowhere in Manhattan's theater district will his presence be more felt than in the Gerald Schoenfeld Theater. That's where Cybill Shepherd, James Earle Jones, and many other people you've heard of are putting on a starry re-staging of Vidal's 1960 play about politics, "The Best Man." We asked a handful of the actors, actresses, directors and producers involved to share their sense of the man whose words they've briefly made their own. Click through for thoughts from Kristin Davis, Eric McCormack, James Earl Jones and Cybill Shepherd (both of whom knew Vidal personally), and more, below.

'Gore Vidal's The Best Man': Cast & Crew React