Saturday, March 25, 2006

Whatever happened to...

About every other day I get a call asking me what became of one announced project or another that never happened. I often don’t know the answers, yet I offer theories. And you know what? I’m sort of bored with saying the same thing over and over again. So now I can just refer people to this. Of course I’m missing dozens (I’m only including what people have asked about in the last few weeks), but it is a start. Feel free to email me ( to ask about additional random shows that few care about—though I will not answer Masada questions; I just can’t do it.

Broadway Follies
When certain shows are announced for Broadway, I chuckle a little bit. I admit it. Some of the productions I question actually occur (Urban Cowboy), but more often they disappear. This revue seems to have just gone bye bye. I listened to Florence Hederson on Martha in hope she would mention it, but, alas, after 20 minutes I only came out with a lesson on how to cook salmon (which, being a vegetarian, will not be very useful in my life).

American Buffalo
When this was announced, I completely believed it would occur. It had a star (Laurence Fishburne), a director (Daniel Sullivan) and well-known producer (though I can't remember who). Then it was never heard from again. It was not delayed, it vanished. Maybe with Glengarry winning the Tony Award American Buffalo will resurface? Think—Fishburne was reported for A Raisin in the Sun a few years before that revival happened. Though, while it could indeed be on its way, there are no plans to indicate American Buffalo will be on Broadway anytime soon.

Sister Act
When whoever was originally supposed to produce it (Barry Brown?) moved to another country, many thought Sister Act was dead, but this one is actually happening. It is set to premiere at the Pasadena Playhouse in October and then head to Atlanta's Alliance Theater in January 2007.

Why Do Fools Fall in Love?
Wayne Cilento directing and choreographing a musical of this film, based on the life of Frankie Lymon, never seemed very promising to me, but it was announced for a run a few years back at the Pasadena Playhouse. The money simply fell through well before the show ever premiered. Haven't heard anything about it since.

The Flight of the Lawnchair Man
Many New York hotshots (and I) headed to Goodspeed to see this show in the summer of 2005, with rumors of a Gotham run quickly surfacing. I thought it was very sweet and crowd-pleasing, but needed a lot of tightening. I also was a little unsure it could play in a Broadway house, yet I knew it was unlikely to make money in an off-Broadway space. Producers seem to have shared my concerns, though the project is still very much alive and could indeed make it. I hope it happens here because, as anyone who knows me is aware, I believe this show to possess the Donna Lynne Champlin Tony role. She is just that good in it.

Ricki Lake's Musical Theater Career
Remember how we heard her for Cabaret? And then Chicago? Was it too much to hope for? I guess? Okay, enough with the questions. I honestly don't know why neither of these things came to be. I feel like Chicago would definitely hire her now if she actually wanted to do it, but I guess she currently does not. It just might be that the closest she gets to the theater are Hairspray openings…

Cry Baby
I didn't know how Cry Baby would sell to the masses, but I was really looking forward to it coming. I love the movie, I was intrigued by the team assembled, I heard the reading was better than the reading of The Wedding Singer… I am aware that very little has been heard about it for a very long while. Nevertheless I believe it is still going to happen, out-of-town at the very least. If it doesn't premiere in the summer, look for it in the fall or winter. I'm psyched to see it.

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