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GLEN BALLARD Discusses THE ROSE Musical and PINOCCHIO Live-Action Remake on the Eleven Podcast


The co-writer and producer of Jagged Little Pill shares an update on some other projects

Jagged Little Pill

Glen Ballard, co-writer and producer of Jagged Little Pill, has a couple of exciting projects up his sleeve at the moment! In the first episode of the new season of the Eleven podcast hosted by William Connolly, he shares adapting The Rose for the stage. He also discusses the live-action remake of Pinocchio. Check out some snippets of the conversation below.

On developing The Rose into a stage show...

It's going really, really well. I'm writing it all myself on a music sample, and I think there are 16 songs for the show. There's one song I didn't write called The Rose, which I'm definitely going to use! I'm actually waiting for a book writer named Meg Miroshnik to deliver me the book any day now, and I'm so excited about it. I've written so many songs for it already.

First of all, I didn't really love the songs in the movie, with all due respect. They're not memorable, except The Rose is, and it's not in the movie, it's at the end and so... (laughs) she does not perform it in the movie. So most people, when they think of the movie, think she's doing The Rose...nope, no no no, she did it after that.

For me, it's exciting because we're actually updating it. This is one where we are taking the liberty to update it because it was sort of the Janis Joplin story, but sort of not. I don't want it to be sort of anything; I want it to be what this is.

It's not going to be the sort of the Janis Joplin story; it's the same character, the same situations but slightly different. That's all I can say, but we have a great team, so we're just waiting to... we could even get a showcase or at least a workshop relatively soon.

And he tells no lies when it comes to Pinocchio...

It's going great; it's going great! I've done a bunch of movies with Robert Zemeckis. Alan Silvestri has done all the movies with Robert Zemeckis, so to be reunited with him and sort of creating a song score has been great. We did it with The Polar Express in 2005, and so we kind of have been there together to do that, and we understand the challenges of what putting songs into a movie is.

It's not the easiest thing now because the audiences don't necessarily understand movie musicals; there's not that any of them. So it's a real challenge to figure that out but, again, Pinocchio, the original, had three iconic songs in it: "When You Wish Upon A Star", "I've Got No Strings" and "Hi-Diddle-Dee-De" - we're going to use those songs, you know that, but everything else is new.

Of course, it doesn't hurt that we have Tom Hanks as Geppetto, and he's doing two songs in the film. And Luke Evans is The Coachman who is an incredible performer. Cynthia Erivo is singing "When You Wish Upon A Star", so, again, it's an embarrassment of riches.

We have some of the most talented people in the entire world - and one of the most incredible directors, and he's telling us to write all these songs. So it's like, 'OKAY!' It's really turned out well.

We have a lot of work to do, but that's the movie business! Honestly, to make this movie during the pandemic was no small feat, and it added to the whole stress of it, but it's actually turned out great, so I'm very excited about it!

Episodes of Club Eleven Podcast are available now on Apple Podcasts and Spotify

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