‘Some Like It Hot’ gets the musical treatment: Everything to know
Reboots, sequels, and franchises seem to be the only recourse for Hollywood in the new millenia, as MCU films dominate the box office with each passing year. Many of these efforts are beloved by audiences, while others flop in what has become a disputed plateau in the ever-changing world of movies. This Hollywood trend is reflected in the world of Broadway, but in a perhaps more creative way.
The world of musicals is no stranger to an adaptation, as shows like The Producers, Beetlejuice, and Mean Girls have shown themselves to be broadway smashes, having all been originally treasured commercial films. Furthermore, these musicals were all adapted from films that were not musicals at all (although they were all ripe with razzle dazzle for the stage).
Entertainment Weekly reported this week that there’s a new musical adaptation of a beloved Hollywood blockbuster, and this time, it’s a true blast from the past. 1959’s Some Like It Hot will breathe new life as a musical set to hit Broadway in 2022. The new show will present the Some Like It Hot story like never before, with musical numbers and in color for the first time.
How did it start?
Some Like It Hot first hit the silver screen in 1959, coming from the supple mind of legendary Hollywood director Billy Wilder.
Wilder made his mark in the world of cinema with Double Indemnity in 1944, crafting the quintessential film noir to which all moody detective films are compared, without which there would be no Drive, True Detective, or The Little Things.
Wilder would continue to prolifically create during the 40s & 50s, unknowingly molding American pop culture during the golden age of Hollywood, perhaps best exhibited in his first team up with Marilyn Monroe in The Seven Year Itch in 1955.
We know what you’re thinking, and yes, this is the film where Monroe holds down her dress over a blowing subway grate, giving us one of the most iconic images to ever come from Hollywood.
Wilder worked with Monroe again in 1959 for Some Like It Hot, a comedy that was revered by audiences, The Academy, and the Hollywood Foreign Press.
Furthermore, Some Like It Hot gave us a picture way ahead of its time, dealing with drag & homosexuality in a way perhaps not contemporary, but without the fear-mongering in which the subjects were typically framed at the time (Drag queens & Marilyn Monroe? How was this only just adapted to Broadway?).
How is it going?
The new Broadway adaptation of Some Like It Hot will come to the stage with the help of late-night host & writer Amber Ruffin & Tony nominee Matthew López, as the two are set to man the creative team for the upcoming show.
Ruffin is known for her work on Late Night with Seth Meyers, while López is best known for his work on The Inheritance. They’ll be writing the show, while music will come from Marc Shaiman, and lyrics will come from Shaiman & Hairspray’s Scott Wittman. Book of Morman’s Casey Nicholaw will direct & head the musical’s choreography.
Matthew López has stated he’s excited to put a contemporary spin on the over sixty-year-old classic, in which characters’ race will be “instrumental (and not incidental) to the story”.
This update will be a leap forward for Some Like It Hot, as the 1959 original has, unsurprisingly, little (if any) representation of marginalized groups. It’s this mentality that’s made the inclusion of Amber Ruffin as a black voice so important to Lopez, and will do doubt bring new life to the white-washed classic.
The Some Like It Hot musical is set to hit the Broadway stage in 2022, produced by the Shubert Organization & Neil Meron, and co-produced by Roy Furman, Robert Greenblatt, the Nederlander Organization, and Kenny Leon. Amber Ruffin & Matthew López are leading the show’s team creatively, and we can only hope the theater will be ready for audiences so the show can hit the stage next year.