It seems like lately, Broadway has been rummaging through the ’90’s for musical material. Perhaps the mentality is that remakes are all the rage on the big screen, why shouldn’t that apply to the theater? Just as it does for movies, the success of these stage musicals likely depends largely on the source material, and people's interest in it. Sister Act and Newsies already fall in or near the musical category, so their subsequent stage adaptations are likely to be fairly easy transitions, but how will something like Austin Powers work on Broadway?
Apparently, we may find out. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Austin Powers himself, Mike Myers is developing a Powers musical with Warner Bros. Theater Ventures for Broadway. While Myers will write the story, he won’t actually star in it this time around. It’s possible they’ll be aiming for someone significantly younger for the title role, as the story will apparently be a prequel to the films.
The Reporter states that Book of Mormon co-director Casey Nicholaw is in talks to direct the production.
In case your memory’s rusty, the Austin Powers movies, the first of which released in 1997, spoofed ’60’s spy films as international spy Austin Powers traveled to the present day, bringing his groovy, swingin’ ’60’s attitude and spy-knowledge with him. If you ask me, Powers’ nemesis Dr. Evil was the real star of the films. Does the story need a sequel or a prequel on Broadway? Probably not, but it sounds like it could be getting both. The Reporter mentions that, in addition to developing the musical, Myers is also developing a fourth movie for the films, but at this point, it sounds like that’s more of an idea than it is an actual project, as it hasn’t even reached the writing stage.
I’m a fan of Mike Myers and I did appreciate Austin Powers over a decade ago, so this is nothing against him or the franchise. Plus, Broadway could always use a bit more mainstream appeal, if only to keep people’s interest and attract the tourists but... Austin Powers? Really? At least Trey Parker and Matt Stone aimed their talent at something original with The Book of Mormon. Plenty of people would’ve showed up for South Park: The Musical on Broadway if such a project came into existance, but Stone and Parker went with something new and not only did it hit, but it now boasts the pre-title, “Tony Award Winning.” I’d be a lot more interested in hearing Myers was developing something completely new for the stage. Then again, who knows? Maybe this prequel will be a fun, ’60’s themed spy-comedy must-see musical.
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Kelly joined CinemaBlend as a freelance TV news writer in 2006 and went on to serve as the site’s TV Editor before moving over to other roles on the site. At present, she’s an Assistant Managing Editor who spends much of her time brainstorming and editing feature content on the site.