After Mamma Mia and HSM 3 were two of last year’s biggest hits, the number of musical films I’m hearing about being in production has sharply increased. Here are a few I’m looking forward to seeing:
Hairspray 2: White Lipstick – July 2010 (USA)
The follow-up to the brilliant 2007 version of Hairspray looks set to be even more hilarious. Most of the cast will return, and as it’s set a few years later, we get to see what has happened since. It’s now the late 60s, so the original plan was to have Zac Efron’s character, Link, going on an acid trip and having conversations with his spots (!), but that has apparently been vetoed. Still, we will see Edna (John Travolta) addicted to diet pills, Tracy being famous (but still fat), and Link pretending to be British.
Bandslam – August 7, 2009 (UK)
This is a new teen musical with Vanessa Hudgens in the lead role, but she’s not the only famous name involved: There’s also Aly (from Aly and AJ), Lisa Kudrow, and… David Bowie??? It sounds like Vanessa’s role will be much like in HSM, as she plays “a classmate with untapped musical talents”. The only difference is that this time, her romance is with the school loser, not the captain of the basketball team. However, what I find very very VERY exciting about this film is that its director is Todd Graff, the man behind the barely noticed musical film, Camp! For that reason alone, I’ll go to wherever is showing it when it’s released here in August.
Footloose – 2010 (USA)
Another Zac Efron musical… or at least it was supposed to be, until he quit the film just the other day. I was quite surprised, as it’s being directed by Kenny Ortega, the man behind the HSM films. Hopefully Zac’s departure from the lead role won’t set them back too much, and the project will still go ahead. I’m sure there are many others who could play the role – someone on IMDB suggested Derek Hough, which seems a good idea as he’s a professional dancer and singer, and seems very popular.
Fame – September 25, 2009 (UK)
Can you believe it? Here’s a musical film remake that doesn’t star anyone from High School Musical! There is an ex-3LW member, one of the ace boyband V Factory, and a girl from Camp Rock, among other non-entities. So, not the biggest stars, but from the look of the promo footage, fame was ironically not the priority in the casting of Fame. However, the adult roles have a few big TV names and fans of the original will be pleased to see Debbie Allen as the school principal! They all seem to be very good dancers, but we haven’t heard them sing or seen them act yet. I wonder if this could be a bit of a flop, just because in the past, musicals without big stars haven’t done well (except HSM).
Were the World Mine – May 18 (UK DVD)
This gay musical version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream was released at the end of last year, and obviously it wasn’t a huge hit as I doubt many of you have heard of it, but it got extremely good reviews. You can watch the trailer here, and I think you’ll agree that it looks like it will be absolutely amazing. The storyline seems a bit like Get Real, with the main character fantasising about a schoolmate who then starts to show signs of affection in return. However, it then takes an unrealistic, but brilliant twist, as the main character develops the power to turn everyone gay! I’m finding it hard to wait even another minute to see this!
Also coming up: