New Line Cinema has cut a deal with cult film director John Waters to write a treatment for a sequel to the hit musical version of his film Hairspray. The film version of the hit Broadway musical adaptation of Waters original 1988 film was a surprise hit last summer, pulling in over $200 million in ticket sales worldwide.
Variety reports that choreographer/director Adam Shankman and producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron are also involved with the proposed sequel. Songwriters Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, who won Tony awards for their work on the stage version of the musical and who also contributed to the film version, are also set to return to write new tunes. None of the film’s cast has been signed for the sequel, and their contracts for the original film did not have sequel clauses. Warners is looking to have the film in theaters in Mid-July 2010.
I’ve been racking my brains all morning, I can’t really think of a musical that has had a successful seque. An attempt to do a stage sequel to Annie failed miserably. A film followup to the Rocky Horror Picture Show, Shock Treatment, was been panned by critics and most fans of the original when originally released. Not a true sequel even though some it shares some of the same characters, it has seen some re-evaluation in recent years in some quarters.
But I think the biggest musical sequel disaster that springs to everyone’s mind is Grease 2. (“Rock-A-Hula Luau” anyone?) Hmmmm…. Michelle Pfeiffer starred in Grease 2 and she starred in the musical Hairspray film. Would it be unlucky to bring her back for Hairspray 2?