'Sunshine,' 'Chocolate' set to be developed

The Sundance Institute has picked up two brewing legit tuners with familiar titles for its Theater Lab at White Oak, with musical versions of “Little Miss Sunshine” and “Like Water for Chocolate” set to be developed.

Book writer-helmer James Lapine and composer-lyricist William Finn team for “Sunshine,” based on the 2006 pic about an extended family’s cross-country trip to get their young daughter to a beauty pageant. Lapine and Finn have previously collaborated on tuners “Falsettos,” “A New Brain” and “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.”

Adaptation of “Chocolate,” based on the 1989 novel (also the inspiration for a 1992 film), comes from book writer Quiara Alegria Hudes (“In the Heights”), composer-lyricist Lila Downs and co-composer Paul R. Cohen. Musical, about a woman whose love for a man can only be expressed through her cooking, will be directed by Ted Sperling (“See What I Wanna See”) and Jonathan Butterell (“Giant”), with Michael Levine on board as designer.

Both movie titles are alums of the Sundance Film Festival.

Sundance Theater Lab’s White Oak session takes places on the White Oak property in Yulee, Fla. This year’s outing runs Oct. 25-Nov. 7.

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