Rob McClure Addresses Concerns Over MRS. DOUBTFIRE's Impact On Transgender Community At BroadwayCon
Rob McClure addressed concerns about how the upcoming Mrs. Doubtfire handles it's crossdressing lead character following media reports of the show seeking advice from GLAAD, amongst other LGBTQ+ advocating organizations. McClure spoke about the issue during the show's mainstage panel at BroadwayCon. How Broadway shows address characters in drag has been a recurring heated debate amongst fans and transgender/gender non-conforming audiences.
Speaking about the upcoming musical based on the film of the same name, McClure said "It was very important to us that there wasn't a single moment where the punchline is 'because it's a dude in a dress...' because that's not a punchline. That's not funny."
"The lucky thing is at the core of this story is a really great farce... and the farce is the comedy. The comedy is in the success or failure of the disguise [...] in whether or not Daniel is pulling this off, and the things that are going wrong and the pitfalls he encounters. In keeping this charade up is where the comedy comes from."
"It was really important to us. While we all understand that Mrs. Doubtfire is not transgender - he is dressing as a woman to hide his identity - not to fulfill his identity. We're not dealing with a transgender character. "
"That doesn't mean that the story is told in an irresponsible way - that there can't be collateral damage to people who could be hurt by it. It was really important to us really early on with the writers - reaching out to transgender artists and transgender advocates and saying 'hey - help us tell this story in a responsible way that that keeps it about what we want it to be about... which is family' [...] and that there are no jokes at the expense of anyone."
MRS. DOUBTFIRE features a book by Karey Kirkpatrick and John O'Farrell and music and lyrics by Wayne Kirkpatrick and Karey Kirkpatrick, the Tony Award nominated team behind Something Rotten! Four-time Tony Award winner Jerry Zaks (Hello, Dolly!) will direct and Lorin Latarro (Waitress) will choreograph. Ethan Popp (Tina) will serve as Music Supervisor, Arranger and Orchestrator.
Mrs. Doubtfire will begin previews on Monday, March 9, 2020 and open on Sunday, April 5 at Broadway's Stephen Sondheim Theatre (124 W 43rd St).