Witherspoon laffer gets musical makeover
“Legally Blonde” has set a date to paint the town pink.The tuner, adapted from Amanda Brown’s novel and the 2001 MGM pic starring Reese Witherspoon, will start previews on the Rialto March 30 for an April 26 opening at a theater to be announced. Before its Gotham bow, the musical preems in a January out-of-town tryout at the Orpheum in San Francisco. Composer-lyricists Nell Benjamin and Laurence O’Keefe, whose earlier collaborations include “Sarah, Plain and Tall” and “Cam Jansen and the Curse of the Emerald Elephant,” provide the score, and Heather Hach, the screenwriter of Disney’s 2003 “Freaky Friday” remake, writes the book. Jerry Mitchell, Broadway’s choreography go-to guy (“La Cage aux Folles,” “Hairspray,” “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels”), gets his first shot in the director’s chair with “Blonde,” helming and choreographing the production. Set is by David Rockwell (“Hairspray,” “Scoundrels”), with lights by Kenneth Posner and costumes by Gregg Barnes. Hal Luftig, Fox Theatricals and Dori Berinstein produce. Story centers on Elle Woods, a bubbly sorority sister who follows her ex to Harvard Law. Hit pic spawned a sequel in 2003.