Elisha Cuthbert's ex-boyfriend Sean Avery has quit his role in an off-Broadway play just days before he was due to make his stage debut.

The former New York Rangers ice hockey star had signed up to appear in Negative is Positive at the Theater for the New City in New York, which starts its run on Thursday (06Nov14), but he has now walked away from the project.

The play's author Christy Smith-Sloman tells New York Post gossip column Page Six, "Avery had a complete meltdown in rehearsals and quit. He pretty much snapped... It's unbelievable he would do this two days before we open. At this point I don't want him to be a part of this production."

An understudy will replace Avery in the play. The star has yet to comment on the news.

The sportsman dated 24 star Cuthbert from 2005 to 2007.