Friday, July 19, 2024

Broadway: 2Pac Musical “Holler” Gets a Bad Rap, DeNiro Still With “Bronx Tale”?


It’s pretty much curtains for the 2Pac musical “Holler If Ya Hear Me.” Billboard prematurely announced the show was closing, which sent everyone into a tizzy. But the facts are there: “Holler” was down 18.5% last week from the previous week. It’s playing at 39% capacity. Last week’s take was just $159,571. I really liked this show, but why in the world was it opened after the Tony Awards? Couldn’t it have waited until the fall? Any why reconfigure the Palace Theater? Why not open off Broadway and build some buzz?

Why, why why? “In the Heights” started on 37th St. and then made its way over. Anyway, it’s all over but for the rapping. PS Aside from the 2Pac stuff, the show reminded me of a musical from the early 70s called “Inner City.” The great and not oft-remembered Linda Hopkins starred in that and won a Tony Award.  “Inner City” also closed quickly…

…Chazz Palminteri is readying a workshop of his “A Bronx Tale” musical this summer, from August 4th to the 27th. It’s unclear whether or not Robert DeNiro is still the director since he’s not listed anywhere in the materials I saw. Alan Menken wrote the songs with Chazz. Tommy Mottola is one of the producers. “A Bronx Tale” was already a DeNiro directed movie. Then Chazz brought it to Broadway as a one man show. Good material can be turned into any form. Next, “A Bronx Tale” will be a sweater! (Just kidding.) This could be a surprise hit next spring!

…”The First Wives Club” is back. The musical version of the hit movie has been under construction, it seems, since 1932. That’s at least when I feel like I started writing about it. Now Linda Bloodworth-Thomason is taking over. She, of course, created the TV series “Designing Women.” The show will appear in a new form next winter in Chicago. The music is from Holland-Dozier-Holland, the Motown legends, although that’s problematic. (We’ll wait and see what happens.) “First Wives Club” was also at one time a website for women that went along with this thing. That’s long gone. If this version is any good, I want to see Jan Maxwell, Donna Murphy, and Audra McDonald as the wives. Audra can play the Bette Midler part, and Norm Foster can be her husband. Otherwise, fuhgeddaboutit…


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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