FILM

"Matilda" and the Brain-Melting Trend of Movie-Musical-Movies

It's the second announcement this month of a movie based on a musical based on a movie.

Sony and Netflix announced on Tuesday that they will be partnering to produce a new Matilda movie based on the Broadway musical.

If you're feeling confused right now—thinking that you've already seen a Matilda movie based on the Roald Dahl novel, breathe easily with the knowledge that you are not hallucinating a memory of Danny DeVito with bleached blonde hair. It happened. Just as Nelson Mandela survived prison and you grew up reading the Berenstain Bears, you really did watch Miss Trunchbull swing a little girl around by her pigtails in 1996. And this new movie is not attempting to replace the special joy of seeing an eight-year-old Mara Wilson gain magic telekinetic powers and use them to assault authority figures. Nothing can take that away from you, and this new movie isn't even an attempt. It's not a reboot or an update. No, this movie is an adaptation of the Broadway musical that was adapted from the 1996 movie that was based on the 1988 novel.

Danny DeVito

If that sounds like an absurd telephone game of mounting degrees of removal and adaptation, you are clearly just out of touch. This is the latest trend in filmmaking. Last week it was announced that the Broadway musical version of Mean Girls, based on the 2004 movie Mean Girls, is also being adapted into a musical movie that will presumably be called Mean Girls.

When the 2005 film The Producers pioneered the daring approach of making a musical movie based on a live musical that was itself based on a 1967 Mel Brooks film about making a musical, the resounding response was that they had gone too far even for a franchise that was so intentionally self-referential and absurd. The movie bombed despite its all-star cast. But clearly they were just ahead of their time. MTV made a hesitant foray into the same arena when they aired a recording of the Legally Blonde musical based on the 2001 movie, but that was just bringing the existing stage version to a wider audience.

Matthew Broderick and Nathan Lane in The Producers

But at long last it appears that the era of movie-musical-movies has finally arrived. In other words, the end times are upon us. If you've managed to read this entire article without getting a nose bleed, you are the chosen one. Let the chorus of angels sing your praises while performing elaborately choreographed dance routines.

Music Features

On This Day: Shakira Liberated Everyone's “She Wolf”

"I was in the studio in a bad mood that day, then I got inspired and went to a corner and I wrote the lyrics and the melody in 10 minutes. The image of the she wolf just came to my head, and when I least expected it I was howling and panting," Shakira said.

By Fabio Alexx

11 years ago, on July 10th, 2009, Colombian singer Shakira released the first single off her third studio album.

"She Wolf" is a synth-pop banger built on a B minor progression. It was, in many ways, an insane song, born out of the singer's own frustration and ennui.

"I was in the studio in a bad mood that day, then I got inspired and went to a corner and I wrote the lyrics and the melody in 10 minutes. The image of the she wolf just came to my head, and when I least expected it I was howling and panting," Shakira said.

Though the music was composed by John Hill and Sam Endicott, lead singer of post-punk band The Bravery, the lyrics were all Shakira's own. "[Shakira] contacted him (Hill), asking if he had any stuff," said Endicott. "We never had her in mind. We just made the thing independently of her, and then she liked it a lot, and she sang over it. She used some of the melodies we put in there and then wrote these crazy lyrics about being a werewolf. And that's how it happened."

Shakira - She Wolf www.youtube.com


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Broadway musical adaptation of Mean Girls sets premiere date for this fall

We look at the names attached and create our dream cast

Paul Hawthorne- Getty Images

A Broadway-aimed musical adaptation written by Tina Fey is set to premiere this fall in Washington DC

The calendar may say it's March 21st, but to Mean Girls fans it might as well be October 3rd, because they've just handed news sweeter than 4,000 candy canes for Glen Coco. After years of rumors and development, it has just been announced that Broadway aimed musical adaptation of the hit Tina Fey-scripted comedy will debut this Fall in Washington DC. To make matters sweeter, Fey herself will be writing the script herself while her husband Jeff Richmond will contribute the music along with the Neil Benjamin, the lyricist behind Legally Blonde the Musical and Heathers the Musical. Tony Winner Casey Nicholaw, the man behind musical comedy hits Something Rotten and The Book of Mormon, will also direct the musical.

The Lorne Michaels-produced musical has yet to debut its cast. For the sake of our own shits and giggles we compiled a list of talents we'd love to see snag a role in the show.

Alexandra Socha (Cady Heron) - An alum of Spring Awakening and Fun Home perhaps best known for her work on the Amazon series Red Oaks, Socha has the impressive ability to capture both Cady's new girl sweetness as well as the edge she develops from Regina's influence.

Krysta Rodriguez (Regina George) - Speaking of Regina, this Smash has the air of coolness and the bite required to portray the queen bee of North Shore. To put it plainly, if we saw her wearing army pants and flip flops, it'd be hard to fight the urge to buy some ourselves.

Laura Dreyfuss (Karen Smith) - Currently tearing it up in the hit musical Dear Evan Hansen, Dreyfuss has the sweetness and comic timing required to pull off the delightfully dimwitted budding meteorologist.

Jasmine Cephas-Jones (Gretchen Weiners) - Hamilton showed she can do seductive, but anybody who saw her work in Noah Baumbach's Mistress America knows she can play comical neurosis like a star. We'd like to hear her sultry voice sing a heart-wrenching ballad about losing a lovely pair of white gold hoop earrings.

Corey Cott (Aaron Samuels) - Having made his mark staring in Newsies and demonstrated solid comedy chops in Gigi, Cott's got the swagger and sweetness to compelling sweep any high school transfer student off their feet and cause the collapse of an entire high school ecosystem.

Jennifer Damiano (Janice Ian) - A Tony nominee for Next to Normal, Damiano knows how to portray the craziness of teen drama. With an unflappable deadpan and killer belt, we dream of seeing her plot to make Regina smell like a foot.

Gideon Glick (Damian) - Currently earning raves for his lead turn in the Broadway play Significant Other, Glick can go big when it comes to sassy or awkward comedy, but also break your heart as well. To put it plainly, he is beautiful no matter what you say and a perfect stage Damian.

Laura Benanti (Ms. Norbury) - Widely considered the funniest woman in musical theater, no dream-cast is complete without her showing up somewhere. If anybody was worthy to inherit Fey's glasses this Tony winner would proudly uphold her legacy.