Breaking News: Elton John's Rocket Pictures to Create JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT Animated Film

Elton John's Rocket Pictures has acquired the film rights to Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's global stage phenomenon, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and is embarking on an all-new animated family feature film, in association with The Really Useful Group, the company announced today.

Rocket Pictures CEO Steve Hamilton Shaw and David Furnish will produce the film with The Really Useful Group. Andrew Lloyd Webber, Tim Rice and Elton John will executive produce.

Steve Hamilton Shaw of Rocket Pictures says; "Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat is one of the most popular musical experiences ever conceived. We are excited about the huge potential of a contemporary animated version, and we're thrilled to bring this to the big screen in partnership with Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice."

The Really Useful Group's Managing Director Barney Wragg says; "Developing Joseph as a new feature film marks the beginning of a new stage in the Really Useful Group's plans to co-produce and fund new films, television and stage productions from our theatrical shows which play continuously worldwide."

Andrew Lloyd Webber says; "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat started in a school and was the first step on the path that led to my musicals with Tim Rice. It is now being performed all over the world by a fourth generation of school kids, and a great movie can only help Joseph be part of the lives of many more."

Tim Rice says; "I have always thought Joseph was a strong contender for an animation production, and I'm delighted this is now going to happen."

Originally created by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice for performance in schools, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is the most performed musical in history. Since its first performance four generations of children have become parents and grandparents listening to, and performing the work. Today it is performed thousands of times a year by school children across the globe. The success of the piece in schools has given rise to an international theatrical phenomenon. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat has now been seen by an estimated 26 million people, earning over $600m at the box office as it continues to enthrall audiences around the world. It premiered on Broadway in 1982 at the Royale Theatre and became a critical and box office hit, landing multiple Tony Award and Drama Desk nominations including Best Musical and Best Original Score. The show has notched up a record 30 years of continuous professional touring around the U.K, will tour the U.S. later in 2014 and is a regular in international markets including South Africa and Korea.

The project is the latest in a ramping up of Rocket Pictures' feature film slate. Rocket Pictures is currently producing Rocketman, the highly-anticipated spectacular musical reinvention of Elton John's life, with Tom Hardy starring as Sir Elton John, co-financed by AI Film and Focus Features distributing. Rocket Pictures is also at work on Sherlock Gnomes, the sequel to Rocket Pictures' 3D animated hit Gnomeo & Juliet, which was released by Disney and earned $200 million worldwide, and the animated family film Will Gallows and the Snake Bellied Troll, written and to be directed by Kelly Asbury.

Rocket Pictures is Elton's film, television and theatrical production company that focuses on family and music-related projects across multiple platforms.

The Really Useful Group is Andrew Lloyd Webber's theatre producing and rights licensing company and controls the theatrical rights for all of Andrew's works, including The Phantom of the Opera, Cats, Jesus Christ Superstar, Evita and Sunset Boulevard.



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