Levinson will be adapting his own screenplay for the show with pop singer/songwriter Sheryl Crow providing the lyrics and music. Kathleen Marshall, who directed and choreographed the recent revivals of Grease (2006), The Pajama Game (2007) and Anything Goes (2011) will handle similar chores here.
In a press release Levinson stated –
Diner was a pivotal moment in my career, and since then I have continues to live with the characters, realizing there is is much more to their story… I’m excited to be embarking on this stage version, which affords me the opportunity as a storyteller to expand on my original vision and let the characters express their innermost feeling and thoughts through song.
The film, which helped to launch the careers of Kevin Bacon, Ellen Barkin, Tim Daly, Steve Guttenberg, Paul Reiser, Mickey Rourke and Daniel Stern tells the story of six high school friends who reunite in 1959 Baltimore for one’s wedding. The play is currently scheduled for an out-of-town tryout next summer.
Diner is a great character piece and Levinson is certainly correct that the characters can be further explored through song. But I have to admit that I find the film’s storyline to be a bit skimpy and wonder if there’s enough meat there for the stage.