Marc Platt Says FOX's A CHRISTMAS STORY Will Be 'A Gift to the World'
As BWW reported yesterday, FOX's next live musical event, A CHRISTMAS STORY, will air Sunday, Dec. 17 (7:00-10:00 PM ET live/PT tape-delayed) LIVE on FOX. The three-hour live television event, inspired by the holiday classic feature "A Christmas Story" and the Tony Award-nominated Broadway production "A Christmas Story: The Musical," will be executive-produced by award-winning film, television and theater producer Marc Platt ("Grease: Live," "La La Land"). In addition, Emmy Award nominee Maya Rudolph ("Saturday Night Live," "Bridesmaids") will star as the mother of nine-year old "Ralphie Parker." Additional casting information to be announced soon.
Executive producer Marc Platt (GREASE LIVE!) and composers Ben Pasek and Justin Paul participated in FOX's TCA panel held yesterday in Los Angeles and shared further details on the project.
Explained Platt, "TV has the unique opportunity to take musicals, live events, so it has that feeling and excitement and spontaneity, but still has a camera between you and what you are watching. I try to create a grammar that takes from cinema and the live world and put it in every scene."
Oscar and Tony winners Pasek and Paul revealed that they are currently working on two new songs for the live broadcast. The composers noted that having the chance to revisit the music from their stage adaptation was a gift. "We wrote the show seven or eight years ago. You don't often get the chance to open back up your show" and ask if there are moments that "could have made better," said Paul. He added that the opportunity to do so was "a great Christmas moment for us."
Asked if there are any concerns over the fact that the majority of viewers who will tune in this December will most likely not be familiar with the original Broadway musical, Platt explained, "[that] is the fun and the challenge of it." He went on to call the musical "a Christmas gift - that's what it is, a gift to the world."
"A Christmas Story: The Musical" was nominated for three Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Original Score (Pasek and Paul) and Best Book of a Musical. The original Broadway production of "A Christmas Story: The Musical" opened Nov. 19, 2012. Based on the writings of Jean Shepherd, the book was written by Joseph Robinette, with music and lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul.
The musical was based on the motion picture "A Christmas Story," written by Jean Shepherd, Leigh Brown and Bob Clark, and the novel "In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash" by Jean Shepherd. The now-classic 1983 feature film, which became a sleeper hit, has since taken on a new life, along with growing critical acclaim, to become a perennial holiday favorite beloved by families and kids of all ages.