Before making a splash with his feature film debut American Beauty, director Sam Mendes made a name for himself directing stage plays and musicals. Following the release of this fall’s new James Bond film Skyfall, it appears that Mendes plans on heading back to the stage once again. Broadway World reports that Mendes will be directing the production of Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory at the London Palladium. David Greig wrote the book (the spoken words of the musical), while the production will feature new songs by Marc Shaiman (Hairspray) and Scott Wittman.
Though no specific details are offered as to how this stage adaptation of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory will differ from Dahl’s book, hopefully it’ll be more entertaining than Tim Burton’s feature film iteration. The musical doesn’t open until June 2013 and Mendes still has a great deal of post-production left to do on Skyfall, but tickets for the musical go on sale this October.
After last night’s huge influx of news from Fox about series pick-ups, renewals and cancellations, it’s now NBC’s turn to announce some of their new series that we can look forward to in the fall. As of now there seems to be some dissension amongst the news outlets online as to whether or not Wonder Woman will actually get picked up, and other potential series like The Playboy Club are rumored for a pick-up but we haven’t heard anything official yet.
After the jump, check out the four new series that have definitely been picked up to premiere sometime this fall including a new sitcom from stand-up comedian Whitney Cummings, another comedy from Christina Applegate, a Broadway musical series from producer Steven Spielberg, and the stateside remake of the British crime drama Prime Suspect.
Variety is reporting that director/choreographer Kenny Ortega (High School Musical, This is It) will now helm the big screen adaptation of the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical, In the Heights, after leaving the planned Footloose remake earlier this year. The musical covers three days in the upper Manhattan neighborhood of Washington Heights, “where a bodega owner who inherited his grandfather’s lottery windfall plots his retirement to a Dominican Republic beach. As he bids farewell to his customers on the block, he becomes conflicted about leaving behind a group that has become family.” Lin-Manuel Miranda will reprise his starring role (he also wrote the lyrics and music) and Quiara Alegria Hudes, who wrote the show, will be adapting the script to the screen.
Universal will be producing the film and I have to give them some credit for not deciding to replace Miranda with a big name star. The film is part of Universal’s plan to make more musicals after the success that they have had recently at the box office with such films as Mamma Mia! and Hairspray. The studio is currently moving ahead with their big screen adaptation of Wicked, their plans to make a sequel to Mama Mia!, and have also recently hired composers Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman (Hairspray) to create a musical based on a soon to be launched Mattel toyline that “aspires to add a new twist to monster lore.”
Willy Wonka’s Great Glass Elevator may be able to go into space, but can it make it to Broadway? Warner Bros., along with producers Sam Mendes and Caro Newling sure think so. Four years after Warner Bros. showed audiences Tim Burton’s vision of the classic Roald Dahl tale, the wheels are in motion to bring the story, and the music, to the Great White Way. Prolific Scottish playwright David Greig has been hired to write the play while Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman (both of the “Hairspray” fame) have been brought on to compose the music. More on the project after the jump.
Steven Spielberg and Showtime are in the early stages of developing a scripted series that will chronicle the development of an original Broadway musical from its creative inception through it’s opening night. Spielberg has been developing the concept for years and the intent is to then open the show on Broadway once the series airs. The still untitled project will also have Spielberg reuniting with the creative team of Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman (“Hairspray”) who recently wrote the music and lyrics for the musical adaptation of “Catch Me if You Can”. You can find out some more details when you click on the jump.