The idea to bring Disney’s 1992 film Newsies to the great white way has been floating around practically since the film was released. The rumors kicked into high gear recently with the rise of Kenny Ortega’s star, tied to the High School Musical money machine. Now Broadway World reports that a reading of the “highly anticipated” (their words, not mine) Newsies Musical is at hand.
This is the surest sign yet that Disney Theatrical is serious about bringing this fan favorite to Broadway. Since Christian Bale has pretty much stated he regrets his role in the movie, I don’t expect him to be involved. But my guess is that Ortega will have a hand in it. We do know that Newsies features a score by Alan Menken and lyricist Jack Feldman (the pair provided the music for the 1992 film) and a new book being written by Harvey Fierstein. Fierstein surprises me since he’s not exactly known for Disney style productions. But he is known for his humor and his previous writing endeavors have included a couple award winners. So chalk that up to a score on Disney’s part.
Good luck to the team putting Newsies together. I hope it’s a smash hit.