The musical used to be go to cinematic fodder. Here are ten examples of existing/needing to be made titles that could tilt audience appreciation back toward the song and dance genre once again.
Musicals are once again off the radar, though this month we will see its limited return with an update of the "classic" Langston Hughes piece, Black Nativity. Naturally, the original gospel themed show has been given an urban update by director Kasi Lemmons, and one imagines a new soundtrack thanks to a need to feed the demo, but the truth is that, outside of Disney's upcoming Frozen, we're back to where we were pre-Chicago. Singing and dancing on film is being relegated to gang-like standoffs ala Step Up and Pitch Perfect or refashioned standards with new material included to make the supposed stars (contractually) happy. While there are rumors of new projects (we've already got a take on Stephen Sondheim's revisionist fairy tale, Into the Woods, in the works, featuring Johnny Depp and Meryl Streep) are abundant, few in film can see the forest of available material from the trees of ticket sales.
With that being said, here are our suggestions for musicals that should be remade (regardless of the results the first time around) or up for consideration. Heck, if someone thought the faux Fellini of Nine was good enough to stage on screen, these 10 choices should be a given. Yet Tinseltown is a fickle financial mistress, incapable of admitting a mistake (Madonna in Evita???) or truly defying expectations (an African American hip-hop version of Annie? Seriously?). Wanna prove something to us, studio suits? Hire a famous Asian arthouse director and give him carte blanche over Sondheim's Pacific Overtures, or better yet, get David Fincher to make a film out of the Broadway vet's controversial Assassins. Until they wake up to the potential within walking distance of the Great White Way, we will be stuck with unnecessary updates and reimaginings. Frankly, any of the properties we're pimping here would be better than that.