There is exciting news for lovers of musical theatre.
NBC TV in America have greenlit the pilot for “Smash” into a series. An hour long drama about the making of a Broadway musical.
Playwright-screenwriter Theresa Rebeck (Mauritius, Our House, “NYPD Blue”) wrote the pilot, which launches the series about the bumpy development of a multimillion dollar Broadway musical. The brainchild of Steven Spielberg the series is to be shot in NYC as was the pilot. It will give many NYC theatre actors a lot of work and exposure.
In the pilot Christian Borle, a Tony Award nominee for Legally Blonde, played a composer, and Debra Messing (“Will & Grace”) played the lyricist, in a story about the making of a new Broadway musical about the life of screen icon Marilyn Monroe. Anjelica Huston played a producer in the pilot. Casting has not been announced but usually holdovers from the pilot are considered.
What a stellar team behind the series – Spielberg will executive produce along with Justin Falvey and Darryl Frank (of DreamWorks), Craig Zadan and Neil Meron (“Chicago,” “Hairspray,” Broadway’s Promises, Promises and How to Succeed…) and Theresa Rebeck, Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman. Tony Award-winning songwriters Shaiman and Wittman (Hairspray, Catch Me If You Can) will write the songs of the show within the series.
The series will trace the process of creating a new musical from concept to songwriting, the recruitment of investors, through to casting and the rehearsals. One season would focus on one musical. Subsequent seasons would address other musicals. The project is expected to be a drama with humor, with the season finishing up with the musical’s opening night.
I love the concept and can’t wait to see the series which is expected to premiere in the US – Sept/October 2011.
- ArtsBeat: Curtain Up: Broadway-Set ‘Smash’ Gets a Spot on NBC’s Roster (artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com)