‘Beetlejuice’ Musical Sets Pre-Broadway Plan

Gordon Cox

Warner Bros. Theatre Ventures’ brewing musical adaptation of “Beetlejuice” has mapped out its road to Broadway, locking in a world premiere run at the National Theatre in Washington, D.C. in October.

An adaptation of the 1988 Warner Bros. comedy that starred Michael Keaton and Winona Ryder, “Beetlejuice” has music and lyrics by Eddie Perfect, the Australian actor-writer-composer who’s also at work on the musical version of “King Kong,” and book by Scott Brown and Anthony King (“Broad City”). Alex Timbers (“Rocky,” “Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson”) directs, with choreography by Connor Gallagher (“The Robber Bridegroom”).

“Beetlejuice” centers on an obnoxious ghost (played by Keaton in the movie) and the misfit teen (played by Rider) who moves into a haunted country house with parents she can’t stand. The movie, with a story written by Michael McDowell and Larry Wilson, has become a fan favorite, and talk of a sequel recurs regularly but so far has amounted to nothing concrete.

“Beetlejuice” marks the latest, high-profile Broadway bet for Warner Bros. Theatre Ventures, the theatrical arm of Warner Bros. that last produced the musical version of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” which carved out a run on the West End but proved less successful on Broadway. Other projects on the WB’s theater docket include a musical version of “Dave” and a play adaptation of “Dog Day Afternoon.

The “Beetlejuice” design team includes the puppet designer Michael Curry (“The Lion King”), as well as David Korins (set), William Ivey Long (costumes), Kenneth Posner (lights) and Peter Hylenski (sound).

Casting and exact dates for the D.C. run of “Beetlejuice” have not yet been set, nor have the details or timeline of a potential Broadway run.

 

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