Footlight follies - films ripe to be made into musicals
With Clint Eastwood's 'Magnum Force' set to make the transition from screen to stage musical, Time Out offers some other suggestions for films that that could be given the all-singing, all-dancing Broadway treatment...
Aliens! The MusicalPlot: Employing some of the most up-to-date onstage pyrotechnics ever devised and some of the sexiest leotards-with-tentacles yet seen on a West End stage, 'Aliens!' is a dazzling sci-fi extravaganza for all the family. Thrill to the flamethrower-totin' adventures of Warrant Officer Ripley and her team of badass basso profundo Marines as they attempt to rid the universe of those pesky all-singin', all-dancin', all-mutilatin' monsters. Stars: Sarah Brightman as Ripley, Russell Watson as Hicks.Big numbers: ‘Assholes, Elbows, Knees and Toes (The Marine Corps Workout Song)’, 'There's a Monster in My Chest (And it's Called My Heart)', and, of course, a witty reprise of Brightman's classic hit ‘I Fell in Love With a Starship Trooper’.
Naked!: The MusicalPlot: To accommodate the quick-fix/ ultra-melodic demands of the Friday night Shaftsbury Avenue set, the film’s numerous stuttered, foul-mouthed and heavily protracted monologues will be panned and scanned into a series of one-line quotations which will be constantly repeated over a one-bar electric piano refrain played at 120dB. Mike Leigh will demand he has his name taken off the credits. Star: David Thewlis reprises his role as ratty Manc vagabond Johnny in this modest stage production with light musical backing by the guitarist from the Stone Roses (playing the congas) and Phillip Glass (playing the congas). Big numbers: ‘How Many Times Did the Nice Man Say Fuck?’, ‘Vodka Bomb’ and 'Actors Workshoppin' '.
Flatliners: The MusicalPlot: Rubbernecking the afterlife has never been so much fun as Arlene Philips’s stunning rollerblade choreography transforms the auditorium into a magical, neon-lit mortuary and the doctors-to-be hoof their way along the cutting-edge of irresponsible post-life research. Larry David’s final act cameo as the dyspeptic ‘God’ is a treat for fans of milking-it one-trick ponies. Medico-rollerskating advisor: Doogie Howser, MD.Stars: David Van Day, former 'Dollar' crooner and unsuccessful Conservative candidate for Brighton & Hove, is back where he belongs, reprising Kiefer Sutherland’s death-happy med student with Smethwick’s leggy Venus, Jamelia, as his bluestocking squeeze.Big Numbers: 'There Is Nothing Like a Morgue', 'Return Ticket to Paradise', 'Cadaver Ever After', 'Now It’s Up (to the Physical Sciences)!'
The Hill: The MusicalPlot: Sidney Lumet's square-bashing stockade drama gets a high-kicking overhaul as a troupe of travelling players inspire the prisoners to put on a spirited version of 'Godspell' with the hill itself standing in for Calvary. Starring: Winners of an 'X-Factor'/'Bad Lads Army' hybrid to be screened on 'Men and Motors'Big numbers: 'Bastinado Blues', 'A Hill of Beans', 'Gradient of My Heart'
Sweet Sweetback's Baaaaadassssss Song: The MusicalPlot: Bringing the story bang up to date, Sweetback is now a hot music producer who falls foul of the Man simply by being rich, successful and black all at the same time. He's forced on the run, with only his limousine, his driver, his butler, his numerous hot-ass bitches and a team of bodyguards for protection. Stark, confrontational and dangerously 'now', 'Sweet Sweetback' shows the harsh truth of what it's like to be self-satisfied and unbelievably wealthy in modern America.Star: P Diddy makes his first foray on to Broadway as star, composer and producer of this hip hop remix of Melvin van Peebles's consciousness-raising blaxploitation masterpiece.Big Numbers: 'Theme from "Shaft" (P Diddy Remix)', 'Theme from "Superfly" (P Diddy Remix)', 'Theme from "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air" (P Diddy Remix)'.
Blue Collar: The MusicalPlot: Paul Schrader's superior slice of rust-belt revolt is ripe for a 'Flashdance'-style makeover: the pounding machines of a corrupt Detroit car plant make the perfect backbeat for high-kicking ensemble dance routines.Star: Jason Schwartzman, Mos Def, Robert Downey Jr (in blackface).Big numbers: 'Even Airbags get the Blues', 'Union City (I Don't Wanna Go Down To)', 'Assembly Line Jump'.
Event Horizon: The MusicalPlot: They threw everything but the kitchen sink at this muddleheaded sci-fi no-no about a spaceship that's been to hell and back. If one were to graft on a few harsh beats and some showstopping dance numbers no-one would be any the wiser.Star: The Mighty Boosh, Jason Flemyng, Queen LatifahBig numbers: 'The Saturn Crimp', 'Stargate Surprise', 'Horizon Dub'.
Fahrenheit 9/11: The MusicalPlot: In the vein of ‘Jerry Springer: The Musical’ (as in, aimed at mung bean-chomping lefty dilettantes) and scored by the surviving members of Grand Funk Railroad, this ‘F 9/11’ revamp casts a wry eye over the Bush era and employs a slew of show-stopping numbers about political corruption, the torturing of terrorist suspects and the demonising of the American people in the eyes of the rest of the world. Star: Michael Moore played by David Soul, real footage of George Bush projected on to a large, wipe-clean canvas backdrop (so the audience can throw their Mojitos at him). Big number: 'Burning Bush', 'A Smug Rejoinder' and '(Doing The) Pie Chart Shuffle'.
Best Defense: The MusicalPlot: This rickety Dudley Moore mass-destruction comedy was never anything other than a punchline in search of a joke. Plenty of scope then for a musical reinvention with Dud recast as a Hoxton club-owner and Eddie Murphy as a jam-hot DJ.Stars: Tom Hollander, Harvey from So Solid Crew.Big numbers: 'Don't Fence Me In', 'Cruising Down Main Street', 'The Tracer Fire In Your Eyes'.
Funny Games: Das MusikalPlot: The quaint, middle-class mini-mansion at the centre of Michael Haneke’s wicked satire on violence and spectatorship gets the German expressionist makeover for this stage treatment, with doors and windows all built at skewed angles and OTT hellfire flames roaring from the backdrop. Stars: Set in the Deep South this time, (hence the Cajun/Dixieland score), Justin Timberlake and Michael Bublé as the maniacs, with Emmylou Harris and Kris Kristoffersen as the family. Their kid is played by Zach Efron.Big numbers: ‘But Can You See What I'm Trying To Say, Like?’, ‘(Me and) My Trusty Nine Iron’ and 'Eggs ist Eggs, Ja?’.
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