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Warchus and Stewart combine for Ghost musical

Published 6 March 2009

Matthew Warchus is to direct a new musical based on the Oscar-winning film Ghost, which will feature music by Dave Stewart and Glen Ballard.

The new production, which is scheduled to open in London’s West End in 2010, will be written by Bruce Joel Rubin, whose script for Ghost won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay in 1990.

Originally a hit film in 1989, Ghost tells the story of Sam and Molly, who are mugged when walking back to their apartment one evening, leaving Sam dead and Molly devastated. With Molly in danger, Sam is stuck in limbo, needing to ensure her safety before passing over to the next world, so he enlists the help of a phoney psychic to pass his messages across.

The film’s cast included Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore and Whoopi Goldberg, who won the Oscar for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, while the scene which brought Swayze, Moore, a potter’s wheel and Unchained Melody together has become one of the most iconic in cinema history.

Stewart, best known for his work alongside Annie Lennox in The Eurythmics, said “I am delighted to be working with my long time collaborator Glen Ballard on this musical adaptation of Ghost. We are having an amazing time bringing some of our own musical sounds and styles to the score.”

A singer, songwriter and producer, Stewart has a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Brits and has sold over 75 million albums with The Eurythmics. His collaborator Ballard is a six-times Grammy Award winner, who has worked with artists from Aretha Franklin to Van Halen. He co-wrote and produced Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill, named Best Album of the Decade by Billboard magazine.

Warchus recently presided over the Laurence Olivier Award-nominated revival of The Norman Conquests at the Old Vic, which he will be taking to Broadway in April. He also directed God Of Carnage, nominated for Best New Comedy, which opens on Broadway later this month, and the hugely successful Boeing Boeing, which enjoyed acclaim on both sides of the Atlantic. Warchus’s other credits include long-running West End comedy Art, Endgame, Life X 3, and musicals The Lord Of The Rings, Tell Me On A Sunday and Our House.

Speaking about the project, Warchus said: “Ghost was a landmark film. An unexpected combination of supernatural thriller and romance entwined. It is the kind of powerful, direct and uplifting story which lends itself well to being reborn as a musical. And the melodic strength and exciting driving energy of Dave Stewart and Glen Ballard’s music will, I believe, provide exactly the right added engine to the narrative, playing a key role in refreshing the source material for a new audience.”

No casting or venue information has yet been confirmed for Ghost.

MA

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