NEW YORK – The glitzy, fictional Broadway musical about the life of Marilyn Monroe that formed the heart of the TV show “Smash” will make the leap to an actual Broadway stage next season.
Producers said Wednesday that “Smash” is slated for Broadway in the 2024-25 season, welcome news to many of the show's fans and the Broadway community who embraced its look at the inner workings of their industry.
“'Smash' is near and dear to my heart, and it was always my hope that a musical inspired by the show would eventually come to the stage,” said lead producer Steven Spielberg in a statement.
The new book for “Smash” will be co-written Tony-nominated Rick Elice, who penned “Jersey Boys,” and Tony-winner Bob Martin, who won for “The Drowsy Chaperone.”
No casting for the Broadway version was revealed. The series on NBC lasted two seasons starting in 2012 and starred Megan Hilty, Jeremy Jordan, Katharine McPhee, Leslie Odom Jr., Krysta Rodriguez, Christian Borle and Debra Messing. The songs included "“History is Made at Night,” “Let Me Be Your Star” and “Hang the Moon.”
Scott Wittman and Marc Shaiman, who wrote many of the songs for the TV show and whose credits include the Tony-winning score for the 2007 musical “Hairspray,” will continue with the stage adaptation, as will original choreographer Joshua Bergasse, who has gone on to choreograph “On The Town” and “Gigi.”
In the series — created by playwright Theresa Rebeck, who left after the first season — viewers watched the long process of casting, composing, mounting and rehearsing a Broadway-bound musical, “Bombshell.”
In the second season, a gritty, low-tech off-Broadway show called “Hit List” competed with “Bombshell” for the Tony Award. Since “Hit List” songs included writing credits for Drew Gasparini, Joe Iconis, Andrew McMahon, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul and Lucie Silvas — in addition to Shaiman and Wittman — it seems that the “Hit List” part of the fictional tale will not make it to “Smash” on Broadway.
The new musical will be helmed by five-time Tony-winning director Susan Stroman. Robert Greenblatt and Neil Meron join Spielberg as lead producers.
“Ever since the show ended in 2012, not a week goes by that someone doesn’t ask us when will they see Smash as a musical. We think we’ve come up with something the die-hard series fans will love but that will also be exciting for people who never saw an episode of the show," Meron said in a statement.
Mark Kennedy is at http://twitter.com/KennedyTwits