Your favorite record store from a ‘90s movie starring Liv Tyler and Renée Zellweger may soon open a location on the Great White Way. As Rolling Stone reported on Friday, an Empire Records musical is heading to Broadway. Per the press release, a stage adaptation of the 1995 movie is currently in the works, and the show is aiming for a 2020 premiere. The director has yet to be announced, but it has been revealed that the musical version of the flick will be adapted by Empire Records’ original writer Carol Heikkinen, producer Bill Weiner is developing the production, and Zoe Sarnak (Afterwords) has been brought on to tackle the stage show’s music and lyrics.
The following will not shock you, shock you, shock you with its fitting behavior: It looks as though the music in the Broadway version of the movie about a group of people trying to save an independent record store in the '90s will channel the alt-rock sounds of that decade. As Sarnak told Rolling Stone,
"There’s so much to mine and be inspired by. I’m a huge fan of Nineties alt-rock, and it was a really special time when that style intersected with punk, grunge and even pop. These styles can inform a score that is melodic while still feeling organic, visceral and explosive. Needless to say, this won't be a 'traditional' Broadway score. But excitingly, so many new Broadway musicals are playing with more contemporary styles, so I think theater audiences will dig that."
And this musical has some serious Doc Martens to fill. As you may recall, the movie's soundtrack includes tons of iconic '90s bands, including Gin Blossoms, Dishwalla, Toad the Wet Sprocket, and the Cranberries. The music featured in the film really is all that and a bag of chips.
Heikkinen said in the press release,
“The movie was really about a family that formed among these minimum-wage record clerks. There’s a lot of nostalgia now for those old record stores where you could go and talk to people who loved the same music you loved, and discover new bands. We hope the musical will capture the memory of what it was like to be young in a time before iTunes and Spotify – music is such an important part of the youth experience, and it’s what brings these characters together. Zoe’s is the perfect partner for this; the movie was part of her adolescence and she not only gets the music, but the themes of friendship and family.”
How do folks feel about this Empire Records musical announcement? The Twitterverse has spoken. Some are going with the tried-and-true GIF reaction.
You might say some are about as stoked as a Rex Manning fan on Rex Manning Day. And the news is changing minds left and right.
However, as is wont to happen when a beloved movie is remade/adapted/rebooted, some fans are none too pleased with this news.
It looks like it is not everyone's bag (of chips).
Funny you should ask. Though some are not on board, there are plenty of people who want this musical.
And they are really into it. Like, really, really into it.
2020 is a ways away, but the excitement is already a-brewin'.
The following may be the most crucial question for the musical: Will someone glue quarters to the stage floor? Because that seems like something that's got to happen. And no, A.J.'s art doesn't need an explanation, Warren.
On that note, happy early Rex Manning Day to all, and to all a good Rex Manning Day night.