Oliver! producer Cameron Mackintosh confirmed that he and John Feltheimer of Columbia Tri-star Television have agreed to a TV movie re-make of his hit stage production. With the recent ratings smash success of old tuner Gypsy starring Bette Midler and the current hit remake of Little Women, nearly 30 years on from the Oscar winning original, the time looks ripe for Oliver! to hit the screen again in this new version. With a string of multi-million dollar musicals to his credit including Cats, The Phantom of the Opera, Miss Saigon and Les Miserables, Mackintosh certainly appears to have the Midas touch – and he certainly won’t need to “pick-a-pocket or two” for some time to come.
Wunderkind director Sam Mendes has become an even hotter property following his stint on the re-vamped Oliver! He is currently being wooed by major film companies and producers with plans for him to make his directorial movie debut later this year. Composer Lionel Bart is being courted by Hollywood to pen music and lyrics for a new animation project. Likewise, Anthony Ward, the spectacular designer responsible for Oliver!’s mammoth production, is set to design his first opera for The Met – Janecek’s The Makropulos Affair in January 1996. Matthew Bourne, whose choreography for the production drew press plaudits, is premiering with a
new version of Swan Lake in London later this year with his acclaimed dance company Adventures in Motion Pictures. Veteran orchestrator Bill Brohn and lighting wizard David Hersey are set for Mackintosh’s next major project, the new Boublil and Schonberg tuner, Martin Guerre, to be directed by Declan Donnellan and designed by Nick Ormerod, to open in the spring of next year.