Films we’d like to see turned into musicals
- Published Date: April 7, 2020
In the last few decades there has been a huge boom in films turned into stage musicals, and for good reason. They can be prove hugely successful, whether they’re classic films, Disney favourites like The Lion King, Aladdin or Frozen, nostalgic throwbacks like Back to the Future or even more obscure independent films like Kinky Boots.
These are four films we’d love to see adapted for the stage! What would you choose?
There are so many Disney-Pixar films we could pick, but music is central to the story of Coco, which is set around the Mexican Day of the Dead. Miguel is a young boy who wants to play music, but music is banned in his family (shades of the town that banned dancing in Footloose!).
The songs in Coco, by Germaine Franco, Adrian Molina, Robert Lopez, and Kristen Anderson-Lopez (the latter two of Frozen fame) are perfectly catchy to be adapted into a musical. ‘Remember Me’ is the main song, and is used as a motif where its meaning changes across the story. The last version of it will have you in tears!
‘Un Poco Loco’ is another highlight – a song Miguel sings about how he loves his family but they can drive him crazy, something a lot of audiences could relate to! As well as the music, we’d love to see the costumes and colour of the film’s world adapted to stage. Would the living skeletons be achieved with puppetry, a la The Lion King? Or clever makeup effects? Either way, the result could be spectacular!
Every Christmas a new generation is introduced to Home Alone, the story of young boy Kevin (Macaulay Culkin) left behind by his family on Christmas.
While it has no songs per se, the score by John Williams has become mandatory Christmas listening for many and would be a strong starting point for new music. And just imagine how the many pratfalls and traps that Kevin sets for the “Wet Bandits” would be recreated on stage!
It would have the comedy, heart and family appeal to become a Christmas favourite. And of course, there would have to be a polka number to pay tribute to Gus Polinski (John Candy), the self-described “Polka King of the Midwest,” that Kevin’s mother catches a ride home with.
How to Train Your Dragon
Based on a book series by Cressida Cowell, the Dreamworks film about a boy and his dragon has had two sequels and a spin-off TV series. So why not a musical?
Watching Hiccup grow from an awkward teenager to a hero, and following his growing bond with the dragon Toothless could be really moving to see on stage. The end credits song ‘Sticks & Stones’ song, by Icelandic singer Jónsi, and the suitably soaring, epic and moving score by John Powell would be strong foundations for new songs.
While there was a “live spectacular” arena stunt show in 2012 based on the film, we’d still like to see a full-blown musical!
Wicked, The Worst Witch… could Hocus Pocus be next? This Disney film about witches that return to modern-day Salem looking for revenge was a bit of a flop on its first release, but has now become a Halloween favourite.
While these are more of the children-eating than children-befriending variety of witches, there’s still plenty of fish-out-of-water comedy that would be fun to see on stage.
‘I Put a Spell on You’ and ‘Come Little Children’ would have to be used, along with plenty of magic effects. Also, the Halloween setting and centuries-old witches create the perfect excuse to make the costumes and make-up as over the top as possible.
Fans must agree, as there’s already been an unofficial “Parody Musical” (which was decidedly not family-friendly), as well as a TV “Halloween Bash” for the film’s 25th Anniversary, but we’d love to see the real thing!