Wonderful Life Makes Wonderful Musical???
Date: 18 November 2003
If it comes off, it will surely become the ultimate alternative to panto for Christmas 2004 and beyond. A stage musical version of festive film classic It's a Wonderful Life is in the works and aiming for a West End premiere late next year. In Frank Capra's 1946 black and white film, Jimmy Stewart played George Bailey who, facing financial ruin, discovers the true riches of love and friendship when an angel shows him what life would be like if he'd never existed. Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore and Henry Travers also starred. The musical will have a score by Stephen Brown (of Olivier Award-winning Spend Spend Spend renown) and a book by Francis Matthews. Speaking this week to Variety, producer Jon Thoday, who's also behind the West End production of Jerry Springer - The Opera, said that it took awhile for him to secure the stage rights for It's a Wonderful Life. Nevertheless, he obviously believes the effort will be well worth it. He told Variety that it would be a "big show, bigger than Jerry (which has just opened at the Cambridge Theatre) - the sort you have to do at the Palladium or the Drury Lane".
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