The Shubert Organization and producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron have teamed up to bring a musical adaptation of “Some Like it Hot” to Broadway.
The musical will feature a score by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, who worked together on “Hairspray,” with a book by Matthew Lopez and direction by Casey Nicholaw. This is the first show in a previously announced development and production deal between The Shubert Organization and Zadan and Meron, who most recently produced “Jesus Christ Superstar Live.”
Roy Furman, Robert Greenblatt and the Nederlander Organization are also producing.
While this is the first production announced, Zadan said in an interview with Broadway News that he, Meron and the Shubert Organization have three other projects currently in negotiations.
“Some Like It Hot” was the first project for which the team was able to acquire the rights, Zadan said, after a complex process that took about two-and-a-half years due to a large number of rights holders. The team has now acquired the rights from Metro Goldwyn Mayer Studios.
Based on the 1959 movie, the story follows two male musicians who are forced to disguise themselves as women in an all-female band after they witness a murder.
A previous musical adaptation of the film, called “Sugar,” produced by David Merrick and choreographer by Gower Champion, opened on Broadway in 1972. But that adaptation was largely a flop, and Zadan said he and his team thought it was a “missed opportunity.”
For this project, Zadan and Meron enlisted their frequent collaborators Shaiman and Whitman because they felt this musical was “tonally in the world of ‘Bombshell,’” a concert which all four had worked on.
However, the next few projects in the producing partnership will not look anything like “Some Like It Hot,” Zadan said.
“The next one that we’re closing the deal couldn’t be more radically different than this one,” he said. “It’s a much more serious dramatic piece, and it’s incredibly emotional and serious.”